JIFF 2017 at Cameo

JIFF 2017 COMES TO CAMEO

For the first time in the festival's history, the Jewish International Film Festival is coming to Belgrave!

From Israel, France and Australia, to the Yiddish-speaking neighbourhoods of Brooklyn, to award-winners and critics' favourites; JIFF presents 65 films from across the globe that celebrate the remarkable diversity of Jewish culture and storytelling.

Purchase a JIFF Festival Pass here.

For more information, head to jiff.com.au

JIFF also screens at our sister cinemas, Classic Cinemas in Elsternwick, and Lido Cinemas in Hawthorn.

The Cakemaker

  • Cast
  • Zohar Shtrauss, Sarah Adler
  • Director
  • Ofir Raul Graizer
  • Synopsis
  • “A tender, tactile and just-sweet-enough story of hidden love, challenged faith and unwittingly shared grief” - Variety

    After the death of his lover, Oran, Thomas heads to Israel - the birthplace of the man he adored. Despite prejudice against his German origins, Thomas becomes the pastry chef at a local café owned by Oran's widow. Yet she hardly suspects that the unnamed sorrow that connects her to the stranger is for one and the same man.

    Beloved by critics and winner of the Ecumenical Jury award at the 2017 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival and the Lia Award at the 2017 Jerusalem Film Festival, The Cakemaker offers a moving meditation on love and the human urge for connection.
    Note: For mature audiences. Contains nudity and sex scenes.

    Screening with selected sessions of the The Cakemaker:
    THE DEVIL WEARS A SUIT
    Australia / 2016 / Short / 20 mins / English
    Director: Eli Mak

    The Devil Wears a Suit, a short film from writer/director Eli Mak, is a confronting drama/scifi hybrid about a Jewish boy who must decide whether to ‘cure’ his homosexuality with an injection or be ostracised from his community forever.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 104 mins
  • Consumer Advice
  • Nudity and sex scenes
  • Genre
  • Drama
  • Running Time
  • 104 minutes

Sammy Davis Jr.: I've Gotta Be Me

  • Director
  • Sam Pollard
  • Synopsis
  • "This delightful and entertaining documentary looks at the life and career of a musical star you thought you knew. It portrays a complex, unique and very talented man who courted controversy his whole life." — The Jerusalem Post

    Singer, dancer, and actor; 'Rat Pack' legend; civil rights activist; dedicated Jewish convert; and Nixon supporter—the life of Sammy Davis, Jr. defies expectations and easy categorisation. Charting the performer’s surprising journey across the major flashpoints of contemporary American history, Oscar-nominated filmmaker Sam Pollard interviews such luminaries as Billy Crystal, Jerry Lewis, and Whoopi Goldberg and culls together an array of electric performances for this captivating exploration of the man, his talents and the struggle for identity.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 100 mins
  • Genre
  • Documentary
  • Running Time
  • 100 minutes

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story

  • Director
  • Alexandra Dean
  • Synopsis
  • “A thoroughly engaging, eye-opening showbiz doc.” - The Hollywood Reporter

    Truth is stranger than fiction in the extraordinary story of Hedy Lamarr, the Hollywood screen siren who invented 1940s wireless technology.

    Known for her striking looks and electric onscreen persona, Lamarr’s legion of fans never knew she possessed such a beautiful mind. An Austrian Jewish émigré who acted by day and drew mechanical and electronic inventions by night, Lamarr came up with a ‘secret communication system’ to help the Allies to beat the Nazis. Weaving in Lamarr’s own voice from archival recordings, this absorbing documentary reveals how Lamarr gave her patent to the Navy, received no credit for her contributions, and wound up impoverished in her latter years.
    Executive produced by Susan Sarandon and narrated by Diane Kruger, Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story is a film for lovers of history, Hollywood and science.

    Premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 86 mins
  • Genre
  • Biography, Documentary
  • Running Time
  • 86 minutes

Bye Bye Germany

  • Cast
  • Moritz Bleibtreu, Antje Traue
  • Director
  • Sam Garbarski
  • Synopsis
  • “...touches chords that are both poignant, funny and bitter.” - ScreenDaily

    Frankfurt, 1946. David Bermann (Moritz Bleibtreu) and his Jewish friends have escaped the Nazi regime and are now dreaming of leaving for America. But how will they get the money in these tough post-war times? The smooth-talking businessman focuses on what the Germans now need most: fine bed linens nicely wrapped in amusing stories! The six talented entertainers go from home to home, praising housewives with ashy chutzpah until the flattered ladies have no choice but to buy their irresistible items. Business flourishes and a bright new future can be seen in the horizon. But questions about Bermann‘s past catch up with him. Why does he have two passports? What about his visit to Hitler‘s mountain retreat? Could he have collaborated with the Nazis? The smart and tenacious US officer Sara Simon refuses to close the interrogation, determined to get to the heart of Bermann‘s wartime memories. Sara matches his quick wit with iron severity, but it becomes increasingly difficult for her to escape his winsome charm.

    Addressing the complexities of Jews struggling to reassimilate in their own homeland, Bye Bye Germany presents a unqiue and bittersweet yarn with a telling contemporary relevance.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 102 mins
  • Genre
  • Comedy, Drama
  • Running Time
  • 102 minutes

Keep the Change

  • Cast
  • Jessica Walter, Christina Brucato, Alex Emanuel
  • Director
  • Rachel Israel
  • Synopsis
  • “An ode to self-discovery and acceptance that’s as funny as it is sweet.” - Variety

    Winner of Best Narrative Feature at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, Keep the Change follows David, an upper-class charmer who leads a very comfortable life until he is mandated to attend a support group for adults with disabilities. There, he is forced to come to terms with his own high-functioning autism, despite his resentment towards being singled out as different, or anything other than what he interprets as 'normal.’

    In group, David is paired with Sarah – a quirky and outgoing woman whose optimism initially irks David. Despite their contrasting personalities, they forge a bond. As their relationship deepens, Sarah, confident in herself and her individuality, challenges David to embrace his own idiosyncrasy.

    An endearing and naturalistic romantic comedy about people navigating the difficulties of a relationship, Keep the Change details an underrepresented community with authenticity, optimism and charming humour.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 94 mins
  • Genre
  • Comedy, Romance
  • Running Time
  • 94 minutes

The Rebel in the Rye

  • Cast
  • Kevin Spacey, Nicolas Hoult, Zoey Deutch, Sarah Paulson
  • Director
  • Danny Strong
  • Synopsis
  • “A fascinating account of Salinger’s life, with a perfect sense of period and a faultless lead performance by Hoult.” – Filmink

    Starring Kevin Spacey and Nicholas Hoult, The Rebel in the Rye is an immersive chronicle of one of the twentieth century’s greatest writers, J.D. Salinger.

    Spanning 15 seminal years of Salinger’s life — from his Jewish upbringing and his enrolment in a Columbia writing class with Whit Burnett (Spacey), to his phenomenal success with iconic novel, Catcher in the Rye — this handsome biopic presents a surprising and comprehensive account of the notoriously reclusive and unconventional author.

    Premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 106 mins
  • Genre
  • Biography, Drama
  • Running Time
  • 106 minutes

The Last Suit

  • Cast
  • Miguel Ángel Sola, Angela Molina
  • Director
  • Pablo Solarz
  • Synopsis
  • Abraham Bursztein, an octogenarian Jewish tailor, embarks on the adventure of a lifetime. Escaping a family intent on confining him to a nursing home, Abraham leaves Buenos Aires in search of the man who, over 70 years ago, saved him from certain death.

    With assistance from a roll call of generous strangers, the sharply-dressed suitmaker makes his way across Europe to Poland, undeterred by travel mishaps, family foibles and geographical obstacles.

    Heartfelt and charming, with a wonderful comedic flavour, The Last Suit reminds us of the enduring importance of family, friends and keeping your word.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 92 mins
  • Genre
  • Drama
  • Running Time
  • 92 minutes

The Testament

  • Cast
  • Ori Pfeffer, Rivka Gur, Hagit Dasberg
  • Director
  • Amichai Greenberg
  • Synopsis
  • Yoel, a senior Holocaust researcher, has dedicated his life to diligently studying the Nazi's methodologies across Austria and Hungary. Over the course of his research he discovers classified documents which hint to the fact that his mother is living under an assumed identity.

    Certain that this is a mistake, Yoel plunges himself further into his research, and, as a historian with an unshakeable commitment to the truth, he decides to continue his investigations even at the cost of ruining his personal and professional life. A compelling mystery about a man who’s willing to risk everything to discover the truth.

    Screened at the 2017 Venice Film Festival (Orizzonti section).
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 88 mins
  • Genre
  • Drama, Mystery
  • Running Time
  • 88 minutes

In Between

  • Cast
  • Mouna Hawa, Sana Jammelieh, Shaden Kanboura
  • Director
  • Maysaloun Hamoud
  • Synopsis
  • “Sparkling, taboo-breaking… an end to stereotyped Palestinian women.” - The Hollywood Reporter

    Layla, Salma and Nur share an apartment in the vibrant heart of Tel Aviv. Layla, a criminal lawyer with a wicked wit, loves to burn off her workday stress in the underground club scene. Salma, slightly more subdued, is a DJ and bartender. Nur is a younger, religious Muslim girl who moves into the apartment in order to study at the university.

    Nur is both intrigued and intimidated by her two sophisticated roommates. When her conservative fiancé visits, he is horrified by her secular friends, entreating her to hasten their marriage, leave Tel Aviv, and assume her rightful role as a wife. She refuses, and his violent rebuttal leaves all of the women shaken.

    In Between is a story of female friendship, and the fierce bond that comes from shared gender, background, and hopes. An extraordinary film that depicts the complexities of contemporary femininity.

    Produced by Shlomi Elkabetz (Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem); In Between screened to critical acclaim at San Sebastian Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival, and won Best Debut Film at the 2016 Haifa International Film Festival. Nominated for highest twelve 2017 Ophir Awards (Israeli Oscars), including Best Picture and Best Director.
  • Classification
  • MA15+, 96 mins
  • Consumer Advice
  • Strong coarse language and sexual violence
  • Genre
  • Drama
  • Running Time
  • 96 minutes

1945

  • Director
  • Ferenc Török
  • Synopsis
  • “One of the most stunningly beautiful movies you’ll see all year.” - Miami Herald

    “...gripping period drama offers a fresh, intelligent cinematic approach.” — Variety

    “...a powerful and beautifully made film.” — Indiewire

    Two men in black hats disembark from a train under a foreboding sky, setting a small town into a panic. The scene could be from a Western, except that the town is in Hungary and the black-clad men are Orthodox Jews, not gun-slinging drifters. As they walk silently behind a horse-drawn cart carrying two crates to an unknown destination, their presence elicits a spate of rumours. Adapting the short story Homecoming by Gábor T. Szántó, award-winning Hungarian director Ferenc Török stunningly captures a transitional moment in European history with one village’s actions reflecting the moral corrosion of an entire continent. Beautifully shot in black and white with a spare, melancholy score, this understated film quietly builds and ultimately packs an unexpected punch.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 91 mins
  • Genre
  • Drama, History
  • Running Time
  • 91 minutes

Past Life

  • Cast
  • Nelly Tagar, Joy Rieger, Doron Tavory
  • Director
  • Avi Nesher
  • Synopsis
  • “Avi Nesher’s brilliant, haunting Past Life may be his best film yet – and that’s saying a lot.” - Jerusalem Post

    Two Israeli sisters unravel the shocking truth about their father’s murky wartime experiences in Past Life: a hybrid detective thriller and heart-tugging melodrama by award-winning filmmaker Avi Nesher.

    Unfolding in the late 1970s, Past Life centres on the daughters of Holocaust survivors, combative liberal journalist Nana and her younger sister Sephi, a soprano and aspiring composer. After a performance in West Berlin, Sephi is accosted by an elderly Polish woman who angrily accuses her father of murder. Traumatised by the startling encounter, the sisters launch an investigation, attempting to discover what really happened to their father in Poland during the war. As guilty secrets and troubling revelations are dredged up, Past Life boldly charts dangerous emotional territory still very much a part of the Israeli collective subconscious. Nominated for four 2017 Ophir Awards (Israeli Oscars) including Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress.

    Please note: select sessions will be screening with short film 'Still Alive.'

    Still Alive
    (Noch Am Leben)
    Australia / 2017 / Short / 8 mins / English
    Director: Anita Lester
    Synopsis: A mother tells her daughter the tale of madness born from the Holocaust. Through the ghetto to cradling her dying sister, Eva Nagler left her mind on the beaches of the Baltic Sea during one of the largest death marches of the war. Being only one of two survivors out of 60,000, we see vignettes of her perspective- distorted, romantic and affected by the muffled memories. Narrated by her great-niece, the story captures a snapshot of the cold reality of war and its terrible lingering aftermath.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 109 mins
  • Genre
  • Drama
  • Running Time
  • 109 minutes

The Wedding Plan

  • Cast
  • Noa Koler, Amos Tamam, Oz Zehavi
  • Director
  • Rama Burshtein
  • Synopsis
  • “Or, My Big Weird Jewish Wedding.” – TimeOut

    “Unique, idiosyncratic and spiritual.” - LA Times

    “A brightly colored, often zany crowdpleaser… an open-hearted, humane film.” - NPR

    Exhausted by single life at 32, spirited bride-to-be Michal (Noa Koler) is eager for the comfort and companionship of marriage. When her fiancé dumps her one month before their wedding she is devastated but undeterred, and decides to keep her wedding date, leaving it to fate - and God - to provide a suitable Mr Right.

    Trailblazing writer-director Rama Burshtein (Fill the Void) returns to the cloistered Orthodox community she knows intimately with this funny and poignant screwball romantic comedy. When it comes to finding love, it's equal parts luck, determination, and blind faith.

    Winner Best Screenplay and Best Actress (Noa Kolar) at the 2016 Ophir Awards (Israeli Oscars), and a US box office hit, The Wedding Plan premiered at the 2016 Venice Film Festival.
  • Classification
  • Not yet rated, 110 mins
  • Genre
  • Comedy
  • Running Time
  • 110 minutes

 

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