Berkshire Jewish Film Festival Celebrates Quarter Century

Ruth Gruber

Ruth Gruber

(LENOX, Mass.) – The Berkshire Jewish Film Festival, one of the longest running in the United States, begins its 25th consecutive season on Monday, July 11, 2011, and runs for seven consecutive Mondays ending on August 22, in the Duffin Theater at Lenox Memorial High School.  Twelve movies will be featured from the United States, Argentina, Germany, Israel, and France. Films will be presented at 4 and 8 and are open to the public. Only one screening will be presented on August 8 at 4.

The festival opens on July 11 at 4 with Ahead of Time, documenting the remarkable life of Ruth Gruber, New York Tribune reporter and photographer. Opening night at 8 will be Bride Flight, a romantic drama of three women from Hungary when they emigrate to New Zealand as war brides after WWII.

On July 18, Jewish Soldiers in Blue and Gray will show at 4, a first of its kind film of the untold story of Jewish struggles in battle and on the home front during the American Civil War.

YanklesYankles at 8 portrays Charlie Jones, an ex-major league baseball player who finds a second chance in life and love managing a Jewish Orthodox baseball team.

The festival continues on July 25 with The Concert. A renowned Bolshoi conductor, fired for hiring Jewish musicians, learns of an invitation for the orchestra to perform in Paris. He intercepts the message and gathers his former musicians to perform. Hidden Children at 8 depicts a bitter postwar legal and religious battle by a devout Catholic woman in Nazi occupied France who sheltered two Jewish orphans.

On August 1, Brothers places the debate of separation of state and religion in Israel in the conflict of two brothers, one a secular kibbutz Israeli and the other a distinguished lawyer and orthodox Torah scholar in the USA. Barney’s Version at 8 is the story of the politically incorrect, impulsive, irascible and blunt Barney Panofsky. The cast includes Paul Giamatti, Dustin Hoffman and Minnie Driver.

Mahler on the Couch and Making Music on August 8 at 4 is a behind-the-scenes look Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Swedish Radio Symphonic Orchestra.

Joshua Nelson

Joshua Nelson

On August 15, Miral dramatizes the conflict of a Palestinian girl in the wake of Arab-Israeli war. Anita at 8 is the story of a young woman with Down Syndrome who is lost in Buenos Aires after the 1994 attack on the Jewish Community Center.

The final film will be on August 22 at 4 with the experiences of modern day women obtaining a get or Jewish divorce in Women Unchained.

Following the final film the Berkshire Jewish Film Festival will celebrate 25 years with a reception at 6:45 pm followed by Joshua Nelson and his Kosher Gospel in concert at 8.

Seating for films is general admission and reserved for the August 22 concert. For information visit Congregation Knesset Israel or call 413.445.4872, ext 25.






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