The Jerusalem Film Festival, which was founded in 1984, will celebrate its 40th edition in July.
As a tribute to the festival, starting in April, retrospective programs will be presented in the various cinematheques, in which 40 films will be screened, a film from each year, from the best films screened over the years throughout the four decades.
Ten films will be screened every month, divided by decade: from the past decade to the 1980s. It begins in April at the Jerusalem Cinematheque, the home of the Jerusalem Film Festival, with films from the last decade of the festival. In May, the Tel Aviv Cinematheque will screen films from the third decade of the festival, while in June, the Haifa Cinematheque will screen 10 films from the second decade of the festival. The films from the first decade of the festival will be screened during the festival itself, the 40th festival, which will take place from July 13-23.
Which films were selected?
According to Roni Mahadav-Levin, CEO of the Jerusalem Cinematheque and director of the Jerusalem Film Festival, and Elad Samorzik, the artistic director of the festival, “From the list of thousands of films that have taken part in the 39 editions of the festival so far, we have chosen a film from each edition. The team that selected the films focused on movies that we believe have survived the test of time, have artistic value and sometimes [because] their directors were discovered or made an impression at the festival for the first time.
"The team that selected the films focused on movies that we believe have survived the test of time, have artistic value and sometimes [because] their directors were discovered or made an impression at the festival for the first time."Jerusalem Film Festival director Roni Mahadav-Levin and festival artistic director Elad Samorzik
The selected films represented the spirit of the time in which they were screened and we felt that they managed to bring cinematic value even many years after they first hit the screens. We made sure to diversify the genres and that [the films] were not worn out commercially or became clichés. We hope that watching these films will give renewed cinematic pleasure to viewers who watched them in the past as well as to those who are watching them for the first time – and above all, will refresh their joy in cinema in preparation for the 40th edition in July.”
The full program for the 40-film celebration has not yet been announced, but among the films showing at the Jerusalem Cinematheque in April are Lady Macbeth, William Oldroyd’s story of a 19th-century bride’s forbidden love, which leads her down a dark path, starring Florence Pugh; Atlantis, Valentyn Vasyanovych’s post-apocalyptic story of life in eastern Ukraine in 2025; Border, Ali Abbasi’s drama with fantastic elements about a customs officer who can smell fear and who develops an unlikely attraction to a traveler; Queen of Hearts, May El-Toukhy’s drama about a lawyer who develops an attraction to her stepson; and Pacification, Albert Serra’s look at politics on an island in French Polynesia. To see the full schedule and new titles when they are announced, click here.