WASHINGTON JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL
Dir. Eyal Datz | 54 min
HebrewYiddish with English subtitles
Sunday, May 1212:45 PM E Street Cinema
Tuesday, May 216:30 PM Bethesda Row Cinema
Hidden Face is the stirring and remarkable account of Yekusiel Yehudah Halberstam—founding Rabbi of the Hassidic Sanz-Klausenburg dynasty—whose harrowing experiences during the Holocaust shaped his philosophy, work, and religious contributions. Through his heroic story and others, Hidden Face presents the complex relationship between ultra-Orthodox Jews and the memory of the Shoah.
Employing rare archival footage and interviews with Sanz Hassidim, Hidden Face reveals the ways they experience the revival and spiritual victory over the Nazis and passed it on to future generations, while dealing with the biggest question of all—where was God during the Holocaust?
Screenings followed by a conversation with film subjects Dr. Baruch Schmidt and Shira Leibowitz Schmidt.
Screenings followed by a conversation with film subject Dr. Baruch Schmidt and Shira Leibowitz Schmidt
Dr. Baruch Schmidt, from a non-religious Jewish family in Texas now makes his home in the Sanz Chassidic community in Netanya. He served as Head of Dept. of Surgery in the Laniado Hospital founded by the late Sanz-Klausenberger Rebbe, the subject of this film. Dr. Schmidt enjoyed a unique, enriching, and multifaceted relationship with the Rebbe. In addition to the towering figure sketched in the movie, Dr. Schmidt can flesh out the portrait of the Rebbe with a wide range of personal experiences.
Shira Leibowitz Schmidt is best known for the book she co-authored with Nobel Prize laureate Roald Hoffman, “Old Wine, New Flasks: Reflections on Science and Jewish Tradition.” From her perch in the Chassidic enclave of Kiryat Sanz, where the film Hidden Face was shot, she has interviewed dozens of Holocaust survivors who were helped by the Sanz-Klausenberger Rebbe to rebuild their lives.
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This event finished on May 22, 2019.