Lights, Camera, Action!

Congregation B’nai Israel’s annual Nagle Family Jewish Film Festival offers a series of inspiring films with hosts who introduce each film and lead a discussion afterward.

The films take place on Wednesdays at 7:00 pm in the VIP Cocktail Lounge with popcorn and dessert accompanying each film. There is no cost for CBI members and a $10 donation per film for guests. The Film Festival is generously sponsored by the Nagle Family.

If you would like to learn more about our Film Festival, please contact our Programming Coordinator, Minda Shaiman.


February 5 – Holy Silence
Run Time: 72 Min.
Film By: Steven Pressman

HOLY SILENCE tells the dramatic story of the Vatican’s actions – and inactions – during World War II and the years leading up to it. Featuring Oscar-nominated actor David Strathairn as the voice of President Franklin Roosevelt, the film focuses on the little known story of Americans – from priests to presidents – who worked behind the scenes in hopes of persuading the Holy See to be a strong moral voice against Hitler and fascism.

 

March 4 – The Light of Hope
Run Time: 96 Min.
Film By: Silvia Quer
hosted by Cantor David Muchnick

In the early 1940’s, refugees from all over Europe seek shelter in South Western France, escaping persecution from the Nazis and from Franco’s regime in Spain. Among them, there are countless women, some of them pregnant, and their little children. The camps are in horrendous shape with refugees holding out with no protection from the cold. With no further ado, young Red Cross nurse Elisabeth Eidenbenz breathes new life into an old villa. By transforming it into a birth clinic she saves the lives of mothers and children from certain death. Despite all hardship, the villa becomes a safe haven resounding with the children’s laughter. But soon threats from without and within take shape: Authorities in Nazi-occupied France demand that she hand over all Jewish refugees and their children, while Elisabeth’s deputy Victoria sides with the Résistance partisans – a worthy cause but one that puts at stake the lives of everyone in the maternity…

 

April 1 – Keep The Change
Run Time: 95 Min.
Film By: Rachel Israel
hosted by Rabbi Allison Cohen

When aspiring filmmaker David (Brandon Polansky) is mandated by a judge to attend a social program at the Jewish Community Center, he is sure of one thing: he doesn’t belong there. But when he’s assigned to visit the Brooklyn Bridge with the vivacious Sarah (Samantha Elisofon), sparks fly and his convictions are tested. Their budding relationship must weather Sarah’s romantic past, David’s judgmental mother (Jessica Walter), and their own pre-conceptions of what love is supposed to look like. Under the guise of an off-kilter New York romantic comedy, Keep the Change does something quite radical in offering a refreshingly honest portrait of a community seldom depicted on the big screen. Rarely has a romcom felt so deep and poignant. Thoroughly charming and quite funny, the film’s warmth and candor brings growth and transformation to the characters, and ultimately, to us.