Things Behind the Sun
Director: Yuval Shafferman
Hebrew, with subtitles.
Winner, Assi Dayan Best Actor 2006, Israeli Academy, "Ophir" Award, Jerusalem Film
Length: 110 Min
A debut feature from an emerging young Israeli director. This melodrama peers
into the lives of the dysfunctional Grossman family, who are facing reconciliation
after the wife’s paintings expose her family’s secrets. A nurse calls
from the hospital to say that their elderly father and grandfather, whom they had
not seen for 10 years, has taken a turn for the worse. She suggests that it might
be a good time to visit. Each family member struggles to find love and intimacy
with him while sealing themselves from the others. The youngest daughter does not
reveal that she understands the English her parents use in private or that she
has begun visiting the hospital. The older daughter conceals her lesbianism – even
from herself. The 30-year-old son pretends to participate in life, but stays in
his pajamas all day. The husband will not talk about the visits with his father,
whose death seems suddenly less imminent. The wife, an artist on the verge of her
long-awaited first major show, has not told her family how she used them in various
nude forms in her art. No one discusses the reasons that the man in the hospital,
once an integral part of the family, has been estranged from them for so long.
As the family members begin to talk, they reveal their hidden information? The
process by which the pretenses dissolve is entertaining and fascinating, without
a single morbid moment.
Director: Danny Lerner
Hebrew, with subtitles.
Winner of the 2005 Israeli Film Competition "Best Film Award" in the Haifa
International Film Festival; nominated in 2006 for Best Actress and Best Cinematography
awards of the Israeli Film Academy.
Length: 90 Min
This low-budget black-and-white psychological thriller is the debut film of a talented
young director and his film students. Unusual for Israeli films, it is cinematically
inventive, integrating style, plot, and considerable knowledge of moviemaking. The
roots of the story go deep into the lives of the youth of Tel Aviv. Meow is a young
woman and small-time drug dealer who's tough, reclusive, and emotionally closed off.
She roams the streets and nightclubs of Tel Aviv. She lives in empty apartments and
surfs Internet chat rooms. Her only relationship with the outside world is through
cellular phones, chat forums, and SMS messages. She decides to meet Alex, her chat
buddy. They plan to meet in a nightclub, but a suicide bombing prevents it. She survives
the attack and, after finding Alex in the hospital in a coma, she moves into his
empty apartment. Gradually, the tenants start referring to her as Alex, and the identity
of the wandering woman begins to fade; the dangerous delusion that follows sends
the once-carefree woman traveling down an increasingly treacherous path.
with "A Conversation with Anat Klausner"
On a recent visit to San Jose, San Jose Film Festival's Lorin Fink talked with the
star actress of "Frozen Days", Anat Klausner, about the film, her powerful
performance, and where she sees Israeli film and her career going in the near future.
Director: Lorin Fink
Length: 8 minutes
Director: Avi Lev
English, Hebrew, with subtitles.
Filmed in Canada and Israel.
Only one degree of separation—the saying goes that any two Israelis can instantly
zero in on at least one common friend. This poetic revelatory and life-affirming
documentary is a story about a filmmaker and a painter, each named Avi, who meet
for the very first time in snowy Toronto. They become fast friends and discover shared
nightmares and a youthful fantasy. They embark on a transformative journey back to
Israel to explore and to make their fantasies, long thought impossible, come true.
Their quest returns them to the sights and sounds of their homeland, to the competing
voices of God, culture, and progress. Using Avi’s paintings as an expository
device, Avi the painter and Avi the filmmaker reveal their personal landscapes to
each other. How each experiences the other shatters our preconceptions of present-day
Israel and Israelis around the globe. A "must-see" for every Israeli who
WEST BANK STORY
Director & Co-writer: Ari Sandel
English Hebrew, Arabic, with subtitles.
Winner, Oscar Best Short Action Film 2007; an official selection of the 2005 Sundance
Length: 20 Min
This hilarious short movie is a mock musical that parodies the situation in the
Middle East. It's a parody of West Side Story, set in the Israel-Palestine context.
It gets everything right, from the songs to the craziness of Middle East politics
and allegiances! This movie helps make people laugh despite the serious nature of
the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The movie features a star-crossed love affair between
an Israeli soldier, David, and a Palestinian woman, Fatima. This love cannot be because
their families operate dueling snack stands, Hummus Hut and Kosher King. Tensions
mount when the Kosher King's new pastry machine juts onto the Hummus Hut’s
property. The Palestinians ruin the machine and the Israelis respond by building
a wall between the two eating establishments. The couple profess their love for each
other, triggering a chain of events that destroys both restaurants and forces all
to find common ground in an effort to rebuild, planting a seed of hope.
Director: Dina Zvi-Riklis
Hebrew, Arabic, and French with subtitles.
Starring Gila Almagor and Rivka Raz.
Winner of the Special Prize Award at the 2006 Jerusalem Film Festival.
Length: 106 Min
Alexandria 1942: Two excited new parents, wealthy Egyptian-Jews, welcome King Farouk
into their home. The king comes to bless their new daughters, baby triplets. The
triplets, who had been living a charmed life, suddenly lose their mother in one of
the epidemics that swept Alexandria. Later, when the political fortunes change in
Egypt, they are forced to leave their riches behind and immigrate to Israel with
their father. Sixty years later, the turbulent events of their extraordinary lives
have clouded the sisters’ relationships with secrets and lies. In a final attempt
to clear their guilty consciences, they confront their ghosts and memories to seek
forgiveness. "Three Mothers" is an emotionally charged and tender drama
about "sisters who stuck together and sacrificed their husbands and children
for their love for each other, because they had no other way." This film is
a stunningly beautiful, evocative tale of family relationships at their best and
Director: Avener Levona
A humorous short documentary highlighting the central roles that falafel stands
serve for Israelis and Jews at home and abroad.
Length: 11 Min