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Jewish Journal

Tag: Documentary

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  • Ladies sing the blues

    By Danielle Berrin

    17 hours ago

    Before she became the chart-topping, Grammy-winning, pill-popping artist, Amy Winehouse was just a nice Jewish girl from a suburb in London. She even looked the part. The long angular nose, creamy skin, high cheekbones, the dark shtetl hair … 

    According to the new documentary...

  • New film, ‘Rosenwald,’ tells story of Jewish philanthropist who transformed black lives

    1 week ago

    Alex Bethea, the son of cotton and tobacco farm workers, was in sixth grade in 1965 when his family moved from Dillon, South Carolina, to the tiny town of Fairmont, North Carolina, where he attended a school called Rosenwald.

    But it wasn’t until this week, 50 years later, that...

  • ‘Look of Silence’ paints portrait of fear

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    2 weeks ago

    In Joshua Oppenheimer’s searing new documentary, “The Look of Silence,” Adi Rukun, a 44-year-old Indonesian optician, watches a videotaped interview with two former death squad leaders who boastfully re-enact how they slaughtered prisoners during the purge of some 1 million...

  • Not a Fan—a declaration of independence

    By Mindy Leaf

    July 2, 2015 | 10:57 am

    Superhero summer has blasted down among us once again. The past weekend saw some 43,000 Florida Supercon attendees at the Miami Beach Convention Center (established in 2006, it's the largest comic-con-like convention in South Florida). Next week's San Diego Comic-con (the original,...

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  • Documentary traces the decline and fall of Amy Winehouse

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    July 2, 2015 | 9:32 am

    “If I really thought I was famous, I would go and top myself,” the soulful British singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse says in a media interview in Asif Kapadia’s acclaimed new documentary, “Amy,” which opens in theaters on July 3.

    Her words proved eerily prophetic. In 2011, just...

  • Israeli Air Force, front and center on film

    By Tom Tugend

    June 2, 2015 | 3:36 pm

    The vaunted Israeli Air Force is flying high with two documentaries screening on television and at film festivals, while a feature movie waits in the wings.

    However, the focus is not on today’s highly professional air force, or on its astonishing exploits during the Six-Day War...

  • 70 years on, Hitchcock Holocaust doc finds an audience

    May 19, 2015 | 2:32 pm

    “This was a woman,” the narrator explains, as the camera pans over a figure so emaciated and burnt that it’s barely recognizable as human.

    It’s one of the more arresting scenes in “German Concentration Camps Factual Survey,” a highly unusual Holocaust...

  • On election night, remembering when Israelis loved Iran

    March 23, 2015 | 10:34 am

    While Israel’s election results were still rolling in, one predominantly Jewish audience in New York was watching Israelis talk about Iran.

    But the Israelis in the documentary screened Tuesday night at the Center for Jewish History weren’t addressing the Islamic Republic’s...

  • Ari Shavit’s ‘My Promised Land’ to be made into HBO film

    March 17, 2015 | 2:22 pm

    "My Promised Land,” a best-selling book about Israel by journalist Ari Shavit, is being made into a documentary for HBO.

    Shavit and HBO Chairman Richard Plepler announced the project on Monday at a conference in Jerusalem by the Israeli media company Keshet. The project does not...

  • PBS documentary traces 350 years of Jewish migration

    By  Tom Tugend

    February 18, 2015 | 2:49 pm

    “You survive, you honor us by living,” Martin Greenfield’s father told him. Greenfield, now a New York master tailor, recalled the words after his liberation from the Buchenwald concentration camp.

    The quote could be taken as the theme of “The Jewish Journey: America,” a PBS...

  • ‘Deli Man’: A colorful bio sandwiched inside a tasty documentary

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    February 18, 2015 | 11:38 am

    Erik Greenberg Anjou’s documentary “Deli Man” began when the filmmaker met Ziggy Gruber, 45, the jovial, Yiddish-speaking proprietor of Kenny & Ziggy’s New York Delicatessen in Houston. 

    Over Lucullian platters of pastrami, blintzes and kasha varnishkes several years ago, Gruber...

  • “Above and Beyond,” the story of miracles

    By Deena F. Greenberg

    February 7, 2015 | 3:29 pm

    I just saw Nancy Spielberg’s documentary, “Above and Beyond,” about the U.S. pilots that fought in Israel’s War of Independence. Although I was raised modern orthodox and had been taught a lot about the creation of the State of Israel, there were many things in this movie that I...

  • ‘Night Will Fall’ lifts a curtain on concentration camp atrocities

    By  Tom Tugend

    January 22, 2015 | 11:33 am

    The first time I saw the horrific newsreels of the liberation of the concentration camps, showing mountains of skeletons piled up and skulls staring out of empty eye sockets, was in 1959.

    By a fluke, I had a bit part playing a court translator at a war-crimes trial in the...

  • Rabbi Harold M. Schulweis: The First 80 Years [DOCUMENTARY]

    December 19, 2014 | 12:16 pm

    Rabbi Harold Schulweis, regarded as the most influential synagogue leader of his generation, died at his home after a long struggle with heart disease. He was 89.

    Read his full obituary here.

  • ‘Sleepless in America’ reveals eye-opening truth about lack of sleep

    November 25, 2014 | 12:10 pm

    Can’t fall asleep? Not getting enough sleep? You’re not alone, and that sleep deprivation may be causing a lot more damage than you realize.

    Waking up earlier, going to bed later and getting far less sleep than our bodies require not only makes us tired and unable to function, it...

  • Documentary gets inside head of Heinrich Himmler

    By  Tom Tugend

    October 7, 2014 | 12:24 pm

    In 1941, Heinrich Himmler took time out from organizing the Final Solution to write to his 12-year-old daughter, Gudrun: “In life, one must always be decent, courageous and kind-hearted.”

    This fatherly advice illustrates one side of the SS Reichsfuehrer and the real architect of...

  • The new documentary ‘Pump’ asks society to question its fuel choices

    By Avishay Artsy

    September 23, 2014 | 11:05 am

    It’s already been 13 years since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and in that time we’ve come to understand the difficult geopolitical situation that our oil dependence has put us in.

    In order to keep our cars running, the United States needs to keep the leaders of oil-rich Middle...

  • New documentary ‘Altina’ gives success a different definition

    By  Tom Tugend

    September 17, 2014 | 3:16 pm

    Ambitious girls looking for role models among successful and accomplished women of the past might turn to scientist Marie Curie, aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart or social-justice champion Eleanor Roosevelt.

    And then there was Altina “Tina” Schinasi.

    Tina grew up in the opulent...

  • From Hamas to Shin Bet agent: Mosab Hassan Yousef

    By Tom Tugend

    September 3, 2014 | 1:20 pm

    Few human relationships are as complex and intriguing as one between an intelligence agent and a potential informer, with the Middle East as an ideal proving ground for this thesis, at least cinematically.

    Last year, Israel’s “Bethlehem” and the Palestinian “Omar” vied for an...

  • A modern journey into the ancient world of Kabbalah

    September 3, 2014 | 10:56 am

    There are less time-consuming, less all-encompassing ways of dealing with a midlife crisis than the path chosen by Steven Bram. 

    But having chosen to give his life over to a spiritual journey centered on the study of kabbalah, Bram — a New York-based writer and producer of sports...

  • Documentary reveals Jewish mother’s ‘Little White Lie’

    By Rebecca Spence

    August 11, 2014 | 2:17 pm

    When Lacey Schwartz celebrated her bat mitzvah more than two decades ago in her hometown of Woodstock, N.Y., a synagogue-goer turned to her and said, “It’s so nice to have an Ethiopian Jew in our midst.”

    Never mind that Schwartz, a striking 37-year-old with long black curls and a...

  • PUNK JEWS: Los Angeles Premiere 2/8

    By Tera Greene

    January 30, 2014 | 10:57 pm

    GET EXCITED!

    PUNK JEWS is finally premiering in Los Angeles!!!

    Let me just say that I am SO happy to be back in LA right now. The energy of Los Angeles is vibrant with Arts, Music, Film and media that is worth engaging with.  PUNK JEWS (Dir. Jesse Zook Mann) is a film that...

  • Oren says ‘Gatekeepers’ makes his job harder

    March 18, 2013 | 2:41 am

    Israel's U.S. ambassador,  Michael Oren, said the Oscar-nominated documentary "The Gatekeepers" complicates his mission.

    The movie compiles interviews with six former leaders of the Shin Bet, Israel's internal security service, and records their perceptions of how successive...

  • Documentary filmmaker has a ‘Hava Nagila’ in her heart

    By Elyse Glickman

    February 27, 2013 | 8:15 am

    "Hava Nagila” is one of those songs, like “Celebration” and “Auld Lang Syne,” that brings back memories and gets stuck in one’s head. In fact, “Hava Nagila” is so ingrained in American pop culture that many non-Jews can readily identify it, and high-profile non-Jewish recording...

  • Three films to focus on Israeli Air Force

    By Tom Tugend

    February 27, 2013 | 7:22 am

    Some 65 years after a band of foreign volunteers fought in the skies above Israel to assure the nation’s birth and survival, filmmakers are racing to bring their exploits to the screen before the last of the breed passes away.

    Among the competing producers and their financial...

  • Academy’s doc night focuses on Israeli-Palestinian conflict

    By Danielle Berrin

    February 23, 2013 | 10:28 am

    When did Michael Moore anoint himself the broker of Middle East peace?

    I wondered this as I sat in the audience during the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ “Oscar Celebrates Docs” night on Feb. 20, as an evening that began with laudatory reverence for “nonfiction...

  • Fairy tales won’t bring peace: A tale of ‘Five Broken Cameras’

    February 12, 2013 | 4:23 pm

    Five Broken Cameras (2011), a documentary currently up for a 2013 Oscar and co-directed by the film’s narrator and videographer, Palestinian Emad Burnat, and Israeli filmmaker Guy Davidi, attempts to erase the complexity of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The film unfolds as a...

  • Amy Ziering’s visible war against military rape

    By Danielle Berrin

    February 6, 2013 | 11:53 am

    On a rainy Saturday night in January, a small group of leaders from the worlds of entertainment, media and philanthropy gathered at the home of billionaire businessman Ron Burkle to watch the Oscar-nominated documentary “The Invisible War.”

    For 97 minutes, the room was still....

  • Gatekeepers or Gate Crashers?

    By David Suissa

    January 30, 2013 | 4:17 pm

    How can a dubious and unoriginal Israeli movie become the darling of the film world and even get nominated for an Academy Award?

    That is the real story behind “The Gatekeepers,” a documentary that, as Jodi Rudoren of The New York Times writes, “has already captured the attention...

  • David Geffen:  prickly and terse about his Judaism

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    July 23, 2012 | 4:01 pm

    David Geffen, the notoriously press shy billionaire Hollywood mogul, stared at me as if I had asked him to yank out a tooth.  The setting was PBS’ summer 2012 press tour on July 22, where he was promoting the American Masters documentary, “Inventing David Geffen.” I queried how...

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