Films from a Jewish point of view

Nellie McKay and Philippe Quint costar in the closing film, "Downtown Express," on Nov. 17. McKay will appear at the after-party at World Cafe Live.
Nellie McKay and Philippe Quint costar in the closing film, "Downtown Express," on Nov. 17. McKay will appear at the after-party at World Cafe Live.
Posted: November 09, 2012

The explosion of Jewish culture in the region includes the Gershman Y's venerable Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival, which continues its explorations of the Jewish experience through Nov. 18.

Films and documentaries from Argentina, France, Germany, Israel, Poland, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States reflect the diversity of the Jewish film world. According to Olivia Antsis, director of the festival, the films transcend religion and have wide appeal to audiences of various religions.

Among the offerings:

Hava Nagila (The Movie), a film by Roberta Grossman that traces the song that is a portal to 150 years of Jewish history, culture, and spirituality, and gained extra attention when Jewish Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman performed her routine to it at the Summer Olympics (7:30 p.m. Wednesday)

Downtown Express (7:30 p.m. Nov. 17), which director David Grubin says was the story that "gnawed" at him, one that examines the relationship between a father and son. The film's music is by Michael Bacon, son of the late Edmund Bacon of Philadelphia and brother of actor Kevin Bacon.

In all, more than 20 films and shorts will be shown, with a closing-night party Nov. 17 at the World Cafe Live, after the screening of Downtown Express, with a live performance by Nellie McKay, one of the film's stars.

- Sally Friedman


Information, 215-545-4400, www.pjff.org.

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