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Winnipeg International Jewish Film Festival Announces 2018 Schedule

April 26, 2018

The Winnipeg International Jewish Film Festival will take place this year from May 22-June 10 with an exceptional lineup of curated films, from the thought-provoking to the toe tapping, from laugh-out- loud comedies to history-minded dramas and documentaries. More than 30 screenings of films from around the globe will be presented throughout the three week-long festival, on subjects of Jewish identity, culture, history and diversity. The acclaimed WIJFF is presented by the Rady JCC and The Asper Foundation Performances.

Tickets go on sale May 1. /(204) 477-7510


An Act of Defiance

Friday, June 8, 5:00 pm

Talk Back moderated by author Meira Cook.

In this riveting historical drama, 10 political activists (including Nelson Mandela and his inner circle of Black and Jewish supporters) face a possible death sentence for conspiracy to commit sabotage. (South Africa/Netherlands 2017)


Big Sonia

Sunday, May 27, 2:00 pm

Monday, June 4, 1:00 pm

In a defunct shopping mall, 91-year-old Sonia Warshawski – great-grandmother, businesswoman and Holocaust survivor runs the tailor shop. A poignant story of generational trauma and healing, and a laugh-out-loud-funny portrait of the power of love to triumph over bigotry. (USA, 2017)

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story

Friday, May 25, 5:00 pm

Hedy Lamar’s inventions were the forerunner of Blue Tooth and Wi-Fi.  This fascinating documentary includes interviews about how Lamarr struggled to overcome a one dimensional reputation and make people get past her face. (USA, 2017)


Bye Bye Germany Es war einmal in Deutschland

Thursday, June, 7:30 pm

With a jaunty klezmer-style score and Yiddish-inflected dialogue, this fresh historical perspective is an utterly engaging salute to European Jewish who chose to tough out painful memories to reclaim their lives. (Germany/Luxembourg/Belgium, 2017)



The Cakemaker HaOfe MeBerlin

Tuesday, May 29, 1:00 pm

Sunday, June 3, 4:00 pm

Unwittingly united in grief by a closeted affair, a gay German baker and weary Israeli widow seek mutual catharsis, in The Cakemaker, a compassionate meditation on the human urge for connection. (Israel/Germany, 2017)


Centerpiece Film & Reception

Heading Home: The Tale of Team Israel

Wednesday, May 30, 7:00 p.m.


Josh Zeid, former American Professional Baseball Player & Pitcher for Team Israel in attendance.

Moderated by Matthew Leibl, former broadcaster for TSN 1290 Radio.

 Israel’s baseball team was the underdog of underdogs when they made it to the finals of the 2017 World Baseball Championships in Korea. No one expected Team Israel to make it as far as they did. Heading Home follows the players on their first trip to Israel, and hopefully Israel’s first baseball championship. USA, 2017

The Invisibles Die Unischtbaren

Friday, June 1, 5:00 p.m.

 June 1943, and The Third Reich infamously declares Berlin judenfrei—free of Jews. But at that moment, there are 7,000 Jews still living there—hiding in attics, basements and warehouses, This innovative, “hybrid” film interweaves dramatic re-enactments with actual testimony to bring edge-of-the-seat suspense to the screen. (Germany, 2017) 

Opening Night Film & Reception


Tuesday, May 22, 7:00 p.m.

Talk Back moderated by James Manishen, Artistic Operations Associate, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.

This intimate and enchanting documentary of violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman takes us from the first years of the boy born to non- musical Polish Immigrants in pre-Israel Tel Aviv, to Julliard in New York and then to the great stages of concert music.  (USA, 2017)


Keep The Change

Thursday, June 7, 1:00 pm

Sunday, June 10, 2:00 pm

A romantic-comedy set in a world where the idea of “normal” is a moving needleKeep the Change tells the story of David Polansky who is living in modern day New York, struggling to come to terms with his high functioning autism when he is forced to attend an autism support group at the JCC. (USA, 2017)



Friday, May 25, 1:00 p.m.

Saturday, June 2, 8:00 p.m.

After the death of his mother, Gad a 38-year-old man living with special needs, has to stay with Reuven, the crusty, set-in-his ways father he barely knows. The film's portrayal of a relationship full of love, rejection and co-dependency and moving on to an unknown future is warmly told. (Israel, 2017)


Longing Ga’agua

Monday, May 28, 1:00 pm

Saturday, June 9, 8:00 pm

A middle-aged bachelor’s world is suspended when he learns he has lost a son he didn’t know existed in the affecting Israeli tragicomedy Longing.



Saturday,     May 26, 8:00 p.m.

Wednesday, May 30, 1:00 p.m.

Israel’s number one comedy in 2017 tells the hilarious, moving tale of two small-time criminal enforcers whose beat is to terrorize upscale Israeli restaurant owners. Grateful to be alive after surviving a terrorist attack, they decide to redeem themselves by secretly fulfilling the prayers left by people between the sacred stones of the Western Wall. (Israel, 2017


The Morley Blankstein Architecture Film Series presents:

Moshe Safdie: The Power of Architecture

Monday, May 28, 7:30 p.m.

This fascinating portrait film celebrates the life and work of Moshe Safdie FAIA by delving into his overall and outstanding contribution to the field of architecture, from Habitat 67 to the Holocaust Museum. (Canada, 2005


The Museum Ha’m’zeon

Thursday, May 31, 7:30 pm

Talk Back

Post-film conversation with Robert Engright, prominent cultural critic and founder of Border Crossings Magazine. Currently Robert is a University Research Professor in Art Criticism at University of Guelph and Alison Gillmor, writer and critic.

This unprecedented look behind the scenes at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem isn’t a conventional documentary about the history of the museum, or its world class collection of 500,000 objects (including the Dead Sea Scrolls); it’s a lyrical work in and of itself, a poetic celebration of storytelling and humanity.


Spotlight Film & Reception


Wednesday, June 6, 7:00 p.m.

Director, Serena Dykman will be in attendance. Moderated by writer Holly Harris.

This intensely personal film, made from the third generation’s point-of-view, investigat4es how survivors’ testimonies and the message against intolerance can continue today, in a world where survivors are disappearing and intolerance, prejudice and antisemitism and racism are on the rise. (Belgian/Poland, 2017)

A Quiet Heart Lev Shaket Meod

Monday, June 4, 7:30 pm

In present day Jerusalem, Naomi, a secular young woman seeks refuge from the pressure of her life as a concert pianist. Despite her intentions to stay alone, however, Naomi quickly makes two unexpected connections- one with a musically gifted Ultra-Orthodox young boy and a charismatic Italian monk and organist. Faced with escalating isolation and violence, Naomi must learn to use music as a bridge to overcome towering religious barriers. (Israel, 2016)

Sammy Davis Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me

Sunday, May 27, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, June 8, 1:00 p.m.

A rousing tribute to the iconic song-and-dance man in all his complexities and contradictions, Sammy Davis Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me explores the life and art of this uniquely gifted entertainer whose trajectory blazed across shifting political climates and flash points of American society from the Depression through the 1980s. (USA, 2017)

 Shelter Mistor

Sunday, June 3, 1:00 p.m.

A former Israeli Mossad agent is pulled out of an early retirement to play “babysitter” to “Mona” a Lebanese Hezbollah informant who fled Beirut and has undergone facial reconstruction surgery to be able to begin a new life. In this game of deception, beliefs are questioned and loyalties are tested as their fates take a surprising turn in this suspense-laden, elegant neo-noir. (Germany/Israel/France, 2017)


Simon &Theodore Simon et Théodore

Wednesday, May 23, 7; 30 pm

Simon is about to become a father. How can this man, estranged from his pregnant Rabbi wife, and who walks to his own the rhythm of his own beat, and who can barely take care of himself live up to the responsibility of parenthood. He meets Théodore, an endearing  if bad-tempered, teen being raised by a single mom and the two rebels set out on a crazy quest toward accepting themselves. (France ,2017)

 Spotlight Film & Reception

The Testament Haedut

Sunday, June 10, 7:00 pm

Director, Amichai Greenberg will be in attendance.


Wednesday, June 6, 1:00 pm

An uncompromising Holocaust researcher covers the long-buried secret that casts doubt on his family history. The Testament, Best Film at the Haifa International Film Festival. (Israel/Austria 2017

The Wedding Plan   Laavor et hakir

Sunday, June 3, 7:30 pm

Tuesday, June 5, 1:00 pm

The Wedding Plan is a poignant and funny romantic comedy about love, marriage and faith in life’s infinite possibilities. This romantic comedy tells us that when it comes to finding love, its equal parts luck, determination, and faith. (Israel 2016).


First Ever

Shorts on Sherbrook Film Crawl

Tuesday, June 5, 8:15 pm

First stop: The Handsome Daughter - 61 Sherbrook St

Next stop: The Tallest Poppy - 685 Westminster Ave


Screenings of award-winning, thought-provoking, art-house shorts. Join for views, brews, chats and laughs. Tickets are $10 include all films include a drink at each venue and nibbles. Tickets on sale May 1.

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Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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