Fall is here, and with it a harvest of Jewish cinema. Two film festivals are offering sneak peeks of the best Jewish movies of the year. There's an engaging assortment of features, documentaries, revivals and short films - some 30 in all - many of them personal stories of the Holocaust or assimilation.The Sephardic Educational Center's Fourth Annual Los Angeles Sephardic Film Festival (see page 33) opens Nov. 9 with the West Coast premiere of "K," the latest thriller by French-Algerian filmmaker Alexandre Arcady. A North African Jewish cop is at the center of this mystery about a Holocaust survivor who may not be who he seems.
The International Jewish Film Festival & Conference, Nov. 8-21, opens Wednesdayat the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, where actor Gene Wilder will appear at a screening of his rabbi-in-the-Old-West saga, "The Frisco Kid." New fare includes the antiwar story "Kippur" from controversial Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai (story below); the Holocaust documentary "Sugihara: Conspiracy of Kindness" (see page 32); "Simon Magus," a tale of love and demonology starring Noah Taylor of "Shine" fame; and reprises of terrific films such as Istvan Szabo's Hungarian family saga, "Sunshine."
For information on seminars and screenings (most are at the Laemmle Theatres), contact the Sephardic fest at (310) 273-8567 and the International Jewish Film Festival at (818) 786-4000.