Big Nights

The 28th Festival’s major evenings consist of Opening Night, Closing Night, the WJFF Visionary Award Ceremony, and our Spotlight selections.

Two Jews Walk Into a Bar

(120 min, )
Bar Crawl Shorts Program

Joining together our three loves—good people, good movies, and good drinks—we present a cinematic pub crawl featuring films from the JxJ short series Diverse or Di-Tryin’.

Yemen Blues | Nani | Double Bill

(130 min, )

“[Yemen Blues] sound like an Arabic pop orchestra accompanying serpentine melodies, or a North African trance group driving a modal riff” –The New York Times

“[Nani is a] breathtaking artist, her ballads go under your skin” –Frankfurter Allgemeine, DE

The Spy Behind Home Plate | Spotlight

Dir. Aviva Kempner
(98 min, United States , 2019)

Dynamic filmmaker Aviva Kempner delivers the first feature-length documentary about Moe Berg, the enigmatic and brilliant baseball player who turned spy for the OSS during WWII.

King Bibi | Spotlight

Dir. Dan Shadur
(87 min, Israel/United States , 2018)

The arc of Benjamin Netanyahu’s career is tracked using archival footage of his media performances, which contextualize his evolution from Israel’s great political hope to a controversial and divisive figure.

From Slavery to Freedom | Spotlight

Dir. Arkady Kogan
(84 min, Israel , 2019)

The story of Soviet ‘Refuseniks’ told through the prism of Natan Sharansky’s heroic life. The premiere screening features a post-show conversation with Natan Sharansky and Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer.

Redemption | Opening Night

Dirs. Joseph Madmony Boaz Yehonatan Yacov
(104 min, Israel , 2018)

One of the leading lights of contemporary Israeli cinema, Joseph Madmony (Restoration), returns for this spiritually rousing, emotionally intelligent story of exhilaration and faith.

The Unorthodox | Spotlight

Dir. Eliran Malka
(99 min, Israel , 2018)

The underdog story of the founding of  the Sephardi Haredi political party, Shas, is a crowd-pleasing comedy-drama with a powerful message.

Autonomies | Spotlight

Dir. Yehonatan Indursky
(210 min, Israel , 2018)

In this dystopian drama from Shtisel creator Yehonatan Indursky, Israel is divided by a wall separating the secular “State of Israel,” with Tel Aviv as its capital, and the “Haredi Autonomy” in Jerusalem, run by the ultra-Orthodox.