The Mobile Jewish Film Festival will show several contemporary films at the University of South Alabama and other Mobile venues to celebrate its 11th year anniversary. The films will be screened Jan. 8-29, 2012.The film festival is sponsored by The Mobile Area Jewish Federation and the University of South Alabama.
Festival tickets, priced at $8 for adults per screening and $6 for students and seniors, may be purchased in advance from the federation. Tickets will also be sold at the door. Tickets can be purchased by calling 251-343-7197. Leave a voicemail message with your name, the movie you want to see, number of tickets, telephone number and an e-mail address. Or, you can send an e-mail with the same ticket request information to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more details about the Jewish Film Festival, contact Barry Silverman at (251) 479-3331. The 2011 contemporary films are listed below:
Sunday, Jan. 8, 7 p.m. Springhill Avenue Temple-“Jewish Soldiers in Blue and Gray” reveals the little known struggles facing American Jews during America’s deadliest war. It also examines a time when 10,000 Jewish soldiers fought for both the north and the south, exposing Ulysses S. Grant’s expulsion of all Jews in the territory, and tells the story of President Lincoln’s Jewish doctor who served as a spy in the south. Special guest: Anthony Smith, great-great nephew of Adolf Proskauer, a member of the Springhill Avenue Temple, who’s featured prominently in the film.
Monday, Jan. 10, 7 p.m. John W. Laidlaw Performing Arts Center, USA Main Campus-“La Rafle” features a film in picturesque Monmarte, where three children wearing a yellow star play in the streets, oblivious to the darkness spreading over Nazi-occupied France. Their parents do not seem too concerned either, somehow putting their trust in the Vichy government. In this film, Hitler demands that the French government round up its Jews and put them on trains for the extermination camps in the east. “La Rafle” has been named best feature film in at least 13 Jewish film festivals around the country. Special guest: Introduction by Dr. Susan McCready, professor of French at USA.
Tuesday, Jan. 11, 7 p.m. John W. Laidlaw Performing Arts Center, USA Main Campus-“Unmasked: Judeophobia-The Threat to Civilization” will feature the current political assault on the State of Israel fundamentally as a war against the Jewish people and their right to self-determination. Also in the film, the Jews are facing more than military threats. They are facing the possible destruction of the idea that there should be a nation of the Jewish people. Unmasked conveys in very powerful and compelling ways the danger that civilized societies are facing by the resurgence of lethal hatred towards Jews in general and the Jewish state in particular. Special guest: Appearance by Filmaker Gloria Greenfield.
Thursday, Jan. 12, 7 p.m. John W. Laidlaw Performing Arts Center, USA Main Campus-“For My Father” features Tarek, a Palestinian forced on a suicide mission in Tel Aviv to redeem his father’s honor, who is given a second chance when the fuse on his explosive vest fails to detonate. Forced to spend the weekend in Tel Aviv awaiting its repair, Tarek must live amongst the people he was planning to kill. To his surprise, he connects with several Israelis on the outskirts of society, including the beautiful Keren. This film is nominated for seven Israeli academy awards.
Sunday, Jan. 15, 7 p.m. Ahavas Chesed Synagogue-“The Yankles” is part comedy-part drama about an upstart, Orthodox yeshiva baseball team that earns a spot to compete in the college world series. The team is coached by Charlie Jones, an ex-major league center fielder on parole for multiple DUI convictions, who is desperate to fulfill his community service requirements. While the Yankles strive for success on the field, Charlie works to rebuild his reputation and relationships, and in the process finds redemption. You’ve never seen baseball until you have seen it played by The Yankles! A 6 p.m. ballpark dinner will be held.
Sunday, Jan. 29, 2 p.m., Bernheim Hall, Ben May Main Library-“Ahead of Time” is a documentary about the remarkable life of Ruth Gruber. At 100 years old, Brooklyn born Ruth still has that same sharp intelligent and moxie that propelled her to become the world’s youngest Ph.D. at age 20. When she turned 24, she became a New York Herald Tribune reporter and photographer, and at that same time, she was the first journalist to enter the Soviet Arctic. As a trusted member of the Roosevelt administration during WWII, she was given a dangerous mission.
To view trailers of all films and find out more about the films, visit http://mobilejewishfederation.org/mobile-jewish-film-festival/.