November 19-22, 2020
Screening virtually in Atlantic Canada
Welcome to the 2020 AJFF!
Due to COVID-19, we have made the leap to an online viewing experience! From November 19-22, we will be presenting a virtual film festival on the Cineplex Cinemas’ platform, for everyone in Atlantic Canada to access.
We will deeply miss not being able to gather with you this year, but already look forward to seeing you again next year.
Thank you so much for your interest in the AJFF!
Rate your fav film...
We want to hear from you! Click the button to rate your favourite film and optionally provide feedback on the 2020 digital film festival.
AJFF Extra Content for Select Films & Festival Welcome:
(please click on the title to access the video):
- Divorce Denied: Introduction from director David Ofek
- A Jew Walks Into A Bar: Introduction from filmmaker Jonathan Miller
- The Humorist: Introduction from Vlad Drobinin
- When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit: Introduction from Arianne Robinson
- Art of Waiting: Introduction from David Levy, Consul General of Israel, Montreal
- Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles: Introduction from Raquel Benzacar Savatti, Chief Executive Officer, Israel Bonds Canada
- Welcome from the AJFF chair, Lynn Rotin
How to Purchase Tickets & Watch Films
When you click on one of the "BUY TICKETS" buttons, above or below, you will be directed to the AJFF page in the Cineplex Store. To complete your ticket purchase you will need a Cineplex account, if you do not have one you will be instructed to create one.
Festival Pass: $44.99 + tax (click here to purchase or redeem sponsor code)
General Tickets: $10.99 + tax
- All films subject to change
- Festival pass includes all 9 films (7 screenings) plus the bonus film
- The bonus film is included with every ticket purchase.
- Each film purchased can only be viewed once.
Creating & Using Your Cineplex Account
The virtual AJFF is hosted on the Cineplex Cinemas’ store platform. To purchase and view the films click the Buy Tickets button below and Cineplex will ask you to log in to your existing account or create a new one. You may purchase tickets for the films until the end of the festival - Sunday Nov 22nd - and we encourage you to watch and discuss the films during the film festival days: Thursday Nov 19th to Sunday Nov 22nd. Please follow these steps:
- Click on the "BUY TICKETS" button
- Select LOG IN (top right)
- Select SIGN UP
Problems signing up or ordering a film? Click here to talk to the Guest Services team at Cineplex either by phone or live chat. They can help with everything from creating an account, ordering tickets, or redeeming sponsor codes.
Ways to watch the AJFF films
What devices can you use to watch the AJFF online via the Cineplex Cinemas Store?
- LG Smart TVs from 2012 or later
- Samsung Smart TVs from 2013 or later with Smart Hub
- Roku: Link your Roku to the Cineplex Store
- Chromecast: Cast movies from the Cineplex Store
- Apple TV 4th generation and Apple TV 4K (Black remote)
- AirPlay on all Apple TV 2nd and 3rd generation devices
For instructions on using each of these devices, see Cineplex's complete list of compatible devices here and click on the device you wish to use.
7th Annual 2020 AJFF Films
Fiddler: A Miracles of Miracles
Director: Max Lewkowicz
Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles is the first in-depth documentary film that chronicles the life and themes of this iconic offering. “The goal of our documentary,” says director Max Lewkowicz “is to understand why the story of Tevye the milkman is reborn again and again as beloved entertainment and cultural touchstone the world over.” Rather than use a narrator, the story is told primarily through a tapestry of interviews. Join Sheldon Harnick, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Joel Grey and many others, as director Max Lewkowicz chronicles the play’s story. Among the many pieces of Fiddler history that were uncovered are clips of Zero Mostel; Sheldon Harnick and Jerry Bock introducing a song that was cut from the show; the story of an all-Black and Hispanic Fiddler production put on by an inner city middle school in Brooklyn in 1970, which provoked days of protest; a trove of photos from early 20th century shtetls in Russia; Jerome Robbins’ copious notes during the creation of the original production; and a montage of footage of various covers of the song Rich Man, including one by the Temptations.
USA, 2019, 97 minutes, documentary, English.
Short documentary feature and one short documentary
Directors: David Ofek, Mia Webb
No Jewish divorce is complete without the man literally giving the woman her freedom back. With Israel having neither civil marriage nor divorce, women can get trapped. The film follows several such ‘chained’ women together with Batya, a religious lawyer, who embarks on a struggle against the rabbinical courts.
Israel, 2019, documentary, 59 minutes. Hebrew with English subtitles.
A Jew Walks Into A Bar
Director: Jonathan Miller
An ultra-orthodox Brooklynite aspires to become a stand-up comedian in this funny depiction of the troublesome dichotomy and conflict between religion and career. The film won best documentary short at the River Run International Film Festival, the Nevada City Film Festival, and the audience award at the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival.
2018, 24 minutes, USA, documentary, comedy. English.
Art of Waiting
Director: Erez Tadmor
Liran and Tali, a couple in their thirties who dream of having a child together, are one day told they will have to undergo fertility treatments. What seems simple at first turns out to be very complex. They discover that to be parents to a child, they will have to undergo a long journey full of hardships, with all the physical and mental difficulties that accompany it. Family pressures and of course the challenge it poses to the couple's relationship. Will their love last? In this heartwarming, sweetly funny romance-dramedy it is soon clear that the road to parenthood is full of impediments.
Israel, 2019, 90 minutes. Hebrew with English subtitles. Romantic drama/comedy.
Back to Maracanã
Director: Jorge Gurvich
Roberto (40), divorced with a failing business, his son Itay (11), a spoiled child that snubs his father and despises soccer, and the grandfather Samuel (76), an enthusiastic soccer fan that recently found out he doesn't have much time to live, depart spontaneously to the World Cup Games in Brazil- their former homeland. Their unplanned trip turns into an emotional journey that changes all of them forever in this heartfelt and warmly funny Israeli-Brazilian family drama.
Brazil, Israel, 2019, 90 minutes. Hebrew and Portuguese with English subtitles. Family drama/comedy.
Short documentary feature & one short romantic-drama
My War Hero Uncle
Written and directed by Shaked Goren
"I decided to start sending letters… until my long-awaited release". Ami wrote these words at the age of 18, before he was killed in the 1967 War. Through stories, Memorial Day ceremonies, and his letters, Ami was always a present absence for his nephew Shaked, the film’s director. Following his grandmother’s declining health, Shaked applies to the Defense Ministry for nursing care. His claim is rejected. Their refusal leaves him confused. Fifty years after Ami’s death, a shocking truth is unveiled. This film won the Van Leer Prize for the Best Director at the Jerusalem Film Festival, and the 12th David A. Stein Memorial Award for the Best Documentary at the Toronto Jewish Film Festival.
52 minutes, debut documentary, Israel, 2018. Hebrew with English subtitles.
Directors: Erez Tadmor, Guy Nattiv
"Dear God" depicts romantic Jerusalem seen through the eyes of Aaron, a guard at the Wailing Wall. One day, a beautiful mysterious woman puts a note between the holy stones and Aaron decides to fulfill her deepest wish, while learning that love is all about communication. This film won the audience favorite at the Cherry Hill Jewish Film Festival, Best Film at the Asterfest Film Festival, and the Award of Excellence and Best Editing at the Bangalore Shorts Film Festival.
Israel, Short, 2014, 13 minutes. Hebrew with English subtitles. Romantic drama.
By Michael Idov
In the midst of the collapsing USSR, the favorite stand-up comedian of the regime begins challenging censorship. In 1984 Soviet Union, Boris, a Russian-Jewish stand-up comedian, is tormented not only by external oppression and censorship but also by his own insecurities. Fame, combined with lack of personal freedom, is driving him crazy. Once the leaders who dictate what he can and cannot joke about summon him to their villa, the comedian snaps. Armed with the exotic American notion of “insult humor”, he takes his revenge. This film won the Blue Angel Prize for Best Actor (Aleksey Agranovich) at the Art Film Fest, and the Special Jury Award (Michael Idov) at the Pune International Film Festival.
Russia, Latvia, Czech Republic 2019, 101 minutes. Russian with English subtitles. Drama, social satire.
When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit
Director: Caroline Link
“When I first read When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit by Judith Kerr at school, over 35 years ago, I was surprised by its lightness. This was a story about displacement and escape from Nazi Germany and yet the tone was optimistic, almost light-hearted” says Oscar®-winning director Caroline Link. Suppose your country began to change. Suppose that without your noticing it became dangerous for some people to live in your country. Suppose you found, to your complete surprise, that your own father was one of those people. That is what happens to Anna in 1933. Anna is not sure who Hitler is. She is nine years old when everything begins, too busy to take much notice of his face on posters all over Berlin. But when her own father goes missing one day, she comes to realize that the man on the posters is about to change the whole of Europe – starting with her own small life. She is forced to uproot her entire existence. Anna and her family hastily flee Germany, leaving even her favorite stuffed pink rabbit behind.
2020, Germany, Switzerland, 110 minutes. German with English subtitles. Drama, adapted from Judith Kerr's semi-autobiography.
Bonus Film: free with any ticket purchase
Camp Kadimah: The Story Of Our Lives
Director: Lynda Medjuck Suissa
Since 1943, for six weeks every summer, Jewish children have gathered on the shores of Lake William, Nova Scotia at Camp Kadimah. As they pulled together through generations of song, spirit, and tradition, they shaped a community that would shape their lives forever. Through interviews with alumni from every decade, vintage film and memorable music, this film shows the history of Camp Kadimah from its earliest days to the present. It also tells the story of the Jewish Communities of Atlantic Canada; how they came from Europe to settle in Canada and why Kadimah was founded.
Canada, 2019, 105 minutes, documentary, English.
Camp Kadimah is owned and operated by the Atlantic Jewish Council.
Rosalind & Philip Belitsky
Karen & Howard Conter
Ethel Cooper-Rosen & Mark Rosen
Sharon and Stanley Jacobson
Dawn Frail & Tim Margolian
Judith and Victor Goldberg
Roselle Green & Family
Linda Law & Lloyd Newman
Valerie MacDonald & Jim Spatz
Jo-Anne Nozick & Michael Argand
Rita & Joel Pink
Victoria & Edwin Rosenberg
Debbie Stover & Jeffrey Schelew
Studio 14 Gifts & Gallery
Ann & Howard Thaw
Carol & Simmy Airst
Jane & David Alexander
Nancy & Seth Bloom
The Hon. Myra Freeman and Lawrence Freeman
Wendy Katz & Alan Young
Shirlee & Ralph Medjuck
Janet & Alan Stern
Louise & Andrew Wolfson
About The AJFF
The Atlantic Jewish Film Festival (AJFF) is presented by the Atlantic Jewish Council (AJC). The festival provides an opportunity for the public to experience the Jewish world through film in Halifax. We offer film lovers documentaries, comedies and dramas that otherwise would not screen in Nova Scotia. We choose films to engage, entertain and educate a diverse, inclusive audience.
Following the success of last fall’s 6th Atlantic Jewish Film Festival, the AJFF organizing committee is excited to announce another great year of engaging films highlighting Jewish life and culture around the world.
Contact: Edna LeVine, Director of Community Engagement (AJC), elevine @ theajc.ca
AJFF Committee: Lynn Rotin, Chair | Philip Belitsky | Rosalind Belitsky | Jon Goldberg | Anna Hazankin | Linda Law | Edna LeVine | Naomi Rosenfeld | Jordan Schelew | Flint Schwartz | Ann Thaw | Howard Thaw | Peggy Walt
About the Atlantic Jewish Council
The Atlantic Jewish Council (AJC) has been the cornerstone of Jewish life in the Atlantic Canadian provinces (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, PEI, and Newfoundland & Labrador) since 1975, acting as the organized Jewish community’s representative and program/service provider for non-religious matters. With only a small staff complement and a modest budget, the AJC relies on the support of over 100 volunteers across Atlantic Canada to move the needle on our eight strategic priorities:
- Building a sense of Jewish community across Atlantic Canada;
- Strengthening Jewish identity amongst the Jews of Atlantic Canada, especially our youth;
- Reinforcing the regional identity of the Atlantic Canadian Jewish community;
- Supporting and connecting Atlantic Canadians to Israel;
- Educating about the Holocaust and human rights;
- Helping those in need in our community;
- Fostering relationships with and representing the Atlantic Jewish population to all levels of government, academic institutions, and Jewish and general organizations at both the national and local level; and
- Educating the community of Atlantic Canada at large about Judaism.
The AJC is happy to once again present the Atlantic Jewish Film Festival.