2014 Tucson International Jewish Film Festival Schedule

To see a film’s trailer, click on its title!


Saddlebrooke Kick-Off

Sunday, January 12th • 2:15 p.m. • 7 p.m.






AKA Doc Pomus

(USA, 2012, English, 90 minutes)

Back by popular demand! Brooklyn-born Jerome Felder was paralyzed by polio as a child. He grew up to become a blues singer in Greenwich Village, took the name Doc Pomus, and went on to become one of rock & roll’s most brilliant songwriters. His hits, This Magic Moment, Save the Last Dance for Me and countless others, infuse this poignant biography, telling the story of a man, his music and our nation.


Opening Night at the Tucson JCC

Thursday, January 16th • 7 p.m.

Paris Manhattan








Paris Manhattan

(France, 2012, French with subtitles, 80 min)

This charming romantic comedy features an idealistic young French woman who so loves Woody Allen’s films that she bases her choices in life and love on his philosophies. The film playfully pokes fun at the French love affair with Wood while treating us to some of his most memorable movie moments.


Friday, January 17th • 1:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

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Hunting Elephants

(USA/Israel, 2013, English/Hebrew with subtitles, 96 min)

Twelve-year-old Jonathan is really upset. His father has died in a freak accident while working at the bank and the company not only denies fault; they’re now threatening to repossess his house! Something must be done, and his only hope lies with a trio of eccentric senior citizens (including the hilarious, Shakespearian-trained Sir Patrick Stewart).

Seven Ophir (Israeli Film) Award nominations, including Best Picture


Festival Grand Opening at the Loft Cinemas

Saturday, January 18th • 8 p.m.

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Far Out isn’t Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story

(USA, 2012, English/French with subtitles, 98 min)

+ Q & A with director Brad Bernstein in attendance

For years, Tomi Ungerer maintained successful careers as both a renowned children’s book author/illustrator and the creator of boundary-breaking, politically-charged erotic art. When those worlds collided, however, he disappeared from the public eye in a cloud of controversy. Director Brad Bernstein invites Ungerer to recount his provocative story in light of the formative social and political changes of the 20th century.

For mature audiences. 

Made possible by the Bob Polinsky Memorial Media Arts Fund

The Loft Cinemas- 3233 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85716


Sunday, January 19th • 1 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Bark at Dogs









I Bark at Dogs

(USA, 2011, English, 12 min)

Acclaimed documentary and commercial photographer, Elliott Erwitt, has captured some of the most memorable photographs of the 20th century, portraying everyday life with elegant poetry and a wicked sense of humor.







Every Tuesday: A Portrait of the New Yorker Cartoonists

(USA, 2012, English, 21 min)

The New Yorker is famed for its smart and absurdly off-beat cartoons. Journey into the studios and Tuesday luncheons of the very special cartoonists who are on a never-ending quest to match the perfect drawing with the perfect caption and who face inspiration as well as rejection on a weekly basis.



Sturgeon Queens







Sturgeon Queens

(USA, 2013, English, 40 min)

New York City’s famed Russ and Daughters has been a fixture on the Lower East Side since 1914. Four generations of the Russ family have worked behind the counter to help transform the fish store from pushcart to posh.


Sunday, January 19th • 3:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Simon and the Oaks




Simon and the Oaks

(Sweden/Denmark/Germany/Norway, 2011, Swedish/German/Hebrew/English, 122 min)

In this epic drama, young Simon lives with his loving, working class family in 1939 Sweden but has always felt out of place. His world lights up when he befriends Isak, a Jewish schoolmate whose wealthy family has fled from Nazi prosecution. When it becomes too difficult for Isak to live at home, Simon’s family takes him in, and the melding of these two disparate households creates unexpected bonds and conflicts.

Nominated for a record 13 Swedish “Oscars” (Guldbagge Awards) including Best Picture & Best Director


Sunday, January 19th • 7:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Wagner and Me









Wagner and Me

(United Kingdom, 2010, English, 89 min)

British actor Stephen Fry has been a lifelong fan of the music of Richard Wagner – the world’s most controversial composer. But Stephen is also Jewish, and he is acutely aware that Wagner had some more troubling admirers, Adolf Hitler among them. Follow Stephen on a very personal journey as he explores his fascination for Wagner and confronts his troublesome legacy.

Viola M. Marshall Audience Choice Award, 2010 Rhode Island International Film Festival

A panel discussion with Conductor George Hanson of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and Dr. Tom Kovach, Professor of German Studies and Judaic Studies, University of Arizona, will follow the film.


Monday, January 20th • 1:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Reporting on the Times








Reporting on the Times

(USA, 2012, 18 min)

During World War II, the N.Y. Times, a Jewish-owned newspaper, buried more than one thousand articles about the Holocaust in its back pages, never once making them headlines. A curious young filmmaker is determined to find out why.



Joe Papp in Five Acts








Joe Papp in Five Acts

(USA, 2010, English, 82 min)

The indomitable Joe Papp believed in true democracy in the American theater, on both sides of the curtain. He introduced interracial casting to the stage and brought us free Shakespeare in the Park, inviting New Yorkers of all stripes to experience great theater for the first time. Many of the young talents he nurtured went on to become our favorite stars of stage and screen.


Monday, January 20th • 3:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

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Under African Skies

(USA, 2012, English, 108 min)

On the 25th anniversary of his seminal recording, Paul Simon returns to South Africa to explore the legacy of Graceland and revisit the artists who helped make it a success. The album helped launch “World Music” on the international stage and immortalized Simon as one of America’s most important songwriters. It also influenced the political progress of South Africa, causing and then transcending years of controversy.


Monday, January 20th • 7:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom


The Dandelions

(France, 2012, French with subtitles, 89 min)

Nine-year-old Rachel is caught between her overly-protective mother, a father still trapped by his memories of the Shoah and the near-catatonic grandmother with whom she shares a room. Her mother thinks she needs a shrink (Isabella Rossellini), but what Rachel really needs is a wildly unconventional friend of her own. Both funny and poignant, The Dandelions has a cast of characters you won’t soon forget.


Tuesday, January 21st • 1:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom


The Other Son

(France, 2012, French, Hebrew with subtitles, 105 min)

A moving and provocative story of two teenaged men – on Israeli and one Palestinian – who discover they were inadvertently switched at birth and the complex repercussions that both families must face.


Tuesday, January 21st • 7:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom









Any Day Now

(United Kingdom, 2012, 97 min., English)

1970s Los Angeles. When a teenager with Down syndrome is abandoned by his mother, a gay couple (Alan Cumming and Garret Dillahunt) takes him in and becomes the loving family he’s never had. When their relationship is discovered by authorities, the men are forced to fight a biased legal system to save the life of the child they love as their own. This powerful tale of love and acceptance, inspired by a true story, touches on legal and social issues that are still relevant today.

Audience Choice Award for Best Narrative Feature, 2012 Chicago International Film Festival


Wednesday, January 22nd • 5:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Lady in Number 6









The Lady in No. 6 Music Saved My Life

(USA, 2013, English, 40 min)

At 110 years of age, Alice Herz Somers is the oldest living Holocaust survivor and an incredibly irrepressible spirit. Twice a day, her neighbors enjoy the melodies wafting from her apartment, as this classically-trained pianist continues a life-long affair with music which has sustained her through the years.



Photographs From a Haas Family Vacation to Bavaria, Germany: Fam








American Jerusalem

(USA, 2013, English, 57 min)

Who knew that Jews were largely responsible for making San Francisco the jewel that it is? They came for the gold and stayed on even if they didn’t find it. They had come to the U.S. alone and penniless, and went on to become “machers” in all levels of society and business. Jews were so integrated in the fabric of the City that there were the first to be known as “American Jews.” The film is full of surprising and interesting facts.


Wednesday, January 22nd • 7:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom




(Poland, 2012, 102 min., Polish with subtitles)

A Polish man returns home from the U.S. and finds himself reluctantly drawn into his brother’s struggles surrounding the massacre of more than 340 Polish Jews at Jedwabne in 1941. Deadly wartime tensions and allegiances still haunt this village and divide its neighbors, more than 70 years after the war.

Southern Arizona Premiere

Sponsored by Fay Green & Family via the Shteinshleifer Philanthropic Fund


Thursday, January 23rd • 5:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Closed Season







Closed Season

(Germany/Israel, 2012, 104 min., English, German with subtitles)

A childless German peasant couple find themselves in a complicated, unorthodox arrangement with a hidden Jewish refugee. Told through flashbacks, this historical drama is charged with eroticism and unexpected twists.

Best Actress and Ecumenical Jury Prize winner, Montreal World Film Festival


Thursday, January 23rd • 7:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Out in the Dark







Out in the Dark

(USA/Israel/Palestine, 2012, Hebrew and Arabic with subtitles, 96 min)

A gripping and intensely moving love story between a privileged, gay Israeli lawyer and a Palestinian student. Set against political and personal conflicts, what starts as a tender romance ends as a taught thriller.

Winner, Best Feature, Outflix International LGBTQ Film Festival

The LGBT Inclusion Project of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona


Friday, January 24th • 1:30 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Camp Story







Camp Story

(USA, 2013, English, 27 min.)

Animator David B. Levy creates a moving depiction of an older man’s youthful memories of the years he worked at a summer camp. The visuals hold us in their beautiful simplicity but his voice conveys how profoundly important these summers were for him.

With filmmaker, David B. Levy, and Deborah M. Staab, co-producer, in attendance












Commie Camp

(USA, 2013, English, 68 min.)

Founded in 1924 by Jewish socialists and Communists, many of them immigrants who dreamed of giving their kids a respite from the sweltering city, Camp Kinderland has survived assaults by McCarthyites and the contemporary political right. Through it all, the idyllic New England camp has stayed true to its Leftist ideals and nurtured four generations of progressive-thinking campers.


Saturday, January 25th • 7:00 p.m. • JCC Ballroom

Closing night tickets $10

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Brave Miss World

(Israel, 2013, English/Hebrew with subtitles, 92 min.)

In 1998, two months before being crowned Miss World, Israeli model Linor Abargil was brutally raped. More than a decade later, she’s ready to talk about it – and to encourage others to speak out. Linor travels the world as a victims’ advocate, encouraging others to stand against sexual violence by putting an end to their silence. Her story is a call to action to victims of sexual assault, their families and friends.

Film contains descriptions of sexual violence.  

Sponsored by the Aurora Foundation of Southern Arizona