ROCK IN THE RED ZONE: DOCUMENTARY AND DISCUSSION

ROCK IN THE RED ZONE is an intimate portrayal of life on the edge in the war-torn city of Sderot. Once known for its prolific rock scene that revolutionized Israeli music, for thirteen years the town has been the target of ongoing rocket fire from the Gaza strip. Through the personal lives and music of Sderot’s diverse musicians, and the personal narrative of the filmmaker, who ends up calling the town home, the film chronicles the town’s trauma and reveals its enduring spirit.

“Little White Lie”: Film and Discussion

As described on the film’s website, “‘Little White Lie’ is a personal documentary about the legacy of family secrets, denial, and the power of telling the truth.” Raised in a white, Jewish, upper-middle-class family, filmmaker Lacey Schwartz believed that she was the offspring of both her white parents, despite her obvious mixed-race appearance. In college, Schwartz eventually pried the truth from her mother that Robert Schwartz, the man who raised her, was not her biological father, but rather, she was the product of an affair between her mother and a black man named Rodney.

A decade later, Lacey Schwartz created this thought-provoking documentary about her life and her family through interviews, home movies and archival footage. The film raises important questions about race, identity, denial and truth.

Admission fee: $10; JCHS students are free
Advance registration is available online

Watch a trailer of the film here.

For more information, email Mindy Cohen or call her at 215-635-7300, x155.

“Little White Lie”: Film and Discussion

As described on the film’s website, “‘Little White Lie’ is a personal documentary about the legacy of family secrets, denial, and the power of telling the truth.” Raised in a white, Jewish, upper-middle-class family, filmmaker Lacey Schwartz believed that she was the offspring of both her white parents, despite her obvious mixed-race appearance. In college, Schwartz eventually pried the truth from her mother that Robert Schwartz, the man who raised her, was not her biological father, but rather, she was the product of an affair between her mother and a black man named Rodney.

A decade later, Lacey Schwartz created this thought-provoking documentary about her life and her family through interviews, home movies and archival footage. The film raises important questions about race, identity, denial and truth.

Schwartz will attend the screening and will conduct a post-film discussion. There will also be a dessert and coffee reception.

Admission fee: $20 in advance; $25 at the door
Advance registration available online

Watch a trailer of the film here.

For more information, email Mindy Cohen or call her at 215-635-7300, x155.

“Next Year in Jerusalem” – Documentary Film

— By Anat Kuznetzov-Zalmanson

During the Cold War the Iron Curtain was shut, leaving the people of the USSR hidden and isolated from the world. Many wanted to escape from this isolation but their rights and liberty had been taken away. The feature documentary “Next Year In Jerusalem” tells the story of a group of 15 Soviet civilians, mostly Jewish, who in 1970 had the courage to stand up and fight for their freedom. They plotted to charter a plane, throw out the pilots before takeoff, and fly it to Sweden, knowing they faced a huge risk of being captured or shot down. They proceeded in the hopes that this action would give them a platform to inform the world of the conditions behind the Iron Curtain. They were arrested near Leningrad, imprisoned in Siberian work camps and two of them where sentenced to death. However, their message got out and as a direct result of their bravery, world pressure forced the USSR to open its curtain and throughout the 1970’s 163,000 Jews were liberated from the USSR. It started with the action of a few, the few became many, and the echoes of their bravery have reverberated through history. This documentary, directed by the daughter of the group’s leaders, will tell the whole story for the first time.

More after the jump.

This documentary contains interviews with most of the remaining members of the 16 freedom fighters, but focuses mainly on Sylva Zalmanson who was the face of the revolution, and Eduard Kuznetzov, who was the leader of the group and Sylva’s husband at the time.

“Next Year In Jerusalem” tells the courageous story of an ordinary woman who became the face of a revolution. Sylva Zalmanson was raised in Riga, Latvia during the height of Communism. Sylva remembers the atmosphere in Riga and most of the USSR, “was that of fear, lies and hypocrisy. We wanted to get rid of it and live in a free country and we envied everyone who was lucky enough to leave the place.” The words spoken at Passover, “Next Year in Jerusalem,” were written on Sylva’s heart from a young age. She was the only woman tried at the Leningrad trials of 1970, and was the first to take the stand. When the prosecutors tried to bribe her with a reduced sentence in return for a pleas of Amnesty she responded by saying “If you would not deny us our right to leave Russia, this group wouldn’t exist. We would just leave to Israel with no desire of hijacking a plane or any other thing that’s illegal. Even here, on trial, I still believe I’ll make it someday to Israel. I feel I’m the Jewish people’s heiress so I’ll quote our saying “Next Year In Jerusalem” and “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, may my right hand forget her skill.”