Films at LSS
If you have any questions or comments for the Film Committee please email us.
Saturday April 1st @ 9pm
As vice-president of Hungary’s far-right extremist party, Csanad Szegedi espoused anti-Semitic rhetoric and Holocaust denials, and founded the Hungarian Guard, a now-banned militia inspired by a pro-Nazi group complicit in the murder of thousands of Jews during WWII. But Szegedi’s life was soon upended when his maternal grandparents were revealed to be Jewish. His beloved grandmother, an Auschwitz survivor, had hidden her faith, fearing further persecution.
Keep Quiet depicts Szegedi’s three-year journey to embrace his newfound religion. But is his transformation genuine? Or does he simply have nowhere else to turn?
Against Your Will
Sunday February 12th @ 7pm
Struggling With a Painful Taboo in the Religious Community
Join us for a moving documentary film that tells the story of Gilles and Esther Alexandre of Kibbutz Ein HaNatziv, who struggle with the pain of losing two sons to suicide. Following their devastating loss, the family encounters difficulties when trying to commemorate their children, facing the delicate and complex issue of dealing with suicide in a religious society.
Following the film, there will be a Q&A, with its director, Assaf Banitt, via Skype, and with two leading experts on suicide among young people in the religious world.
Efrem Epstein: Founder of Elijah’s Journey, an organization that tries to raise awareness about suicide and mental illness in a Jewish context.
Victor Schwartz, M.D.: Medical director of the Jed Foundation, which works to protect emotional health and prevent suicide among young adults and teens. Dr. Schwartz is the former head of mental health at Yeshiva University.
This is a unique opportunity to learn about a topic rarely discussed in a religious forum
December 10, 2016 @ 8pm
Leningrad, 1970. A group of young Jewish dissidents plots to hijack an empty plane and escape the USSR. Caught by the KGB a few steps from boarding, they are sentenced to years in the Gulag and two are sentenced to death; they never got on a plane.
It started as a fantasy, Operation Wedding, as outrageous as it was simple: Under the disguise of a trip to a local family wedding, the hijackers would buy every ticket on a small 12-seater plane, so there would be no passengers but them, no innocents in harm’s way. The group’s pilot, who once flew for the Red Army, would take over the controls and fly the 16 runaways into the sky, over the Soviet border, on to Sweden, bound for Israel.
45 years later, filmmaker Anat Zalmanson-Kuznetsov reveals the compelling story of her parents, Sylva and Edward Kuznetsov, leaders of the group, "heroes" in the West but "terrorists" in Russia, even today.
Israel was a member of Operation Wedding and is Sylva Zalmanson’s younger brother. He was only 21 years old at the day of the arrest and he was sentenced to 8 years in the Gulag, which he served in full.
Glenn is a longtime active member of LSS and one of the founders of the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry, which fought for the liberation of the Leningrad Trial defendants. Glenn was one of the film's history advisors and was involved in the process of its production from the beginning.
Shtisel Season 2
Shores of Light and The Violins of War
In a period during which we remember the Shoah, mourn the losses of Yom HaZikaron, and celebrate the birth of the State of Israel …
Lincoln Square Synagogue is pleased to present two very special films that capture all these bittersweet notes, while affirming the goodness of people and the inner strength that sustains us.
Both films were directed by Yael Katzir, who will introduce them and answer questions following the screening.
Shores of Light
An untold story of light after darkness
At the end of World War II, thousands of Holocaust survivors arrived in Southern Italy on their way to the Land of Israel Seventy years later, a group of Israeli women trace their parents’ recovery in a DP camp in Salento, where they found compassion, healing, and the will to create new life.
The Violins of War
A poignant film about creating meaning and beauty amidst violence
Against the backdrop of the second Lebanon War, a master violin workshop for young violinists around the world plays on, exemplifying the power of music and the Jewish and Israeli determination to persevere against all odds. Featuring soloists Ida Haendel and Shlomo Mintz.
THE PRIME MINISTERS: SOLDIERS AND PEACEMAKERS
January 16, 2016 @ 8pm
country's first native-born Israeli leader in 1974, his negotiating the first bilateral treaty between Israel and Egypt in 1975, the dramatic events surrounding Israel's rescue of hostages in Entebbe in 1976, the tense relationship between newly elected US President Jimmy Carter and Rabin, and Rabin's subsequent downfall in a financial scandal involving his wife, Leah.
work for Menachem Begin when he surprised the world in 1977 by being elected the Prime Minister of Israel. It looks at the drama behind Anwar Sadat's historic visit to Jerusalem, the Camp David negotiating process, the difficult relationship between President Carter and Menachem Begin, as well as the tense relations that arose between Begin and President Reagan over the 1982 Lebanon War.
The documentary also recounts Begin's decline after the death of his beloved wife, Aliza, and Yehuda Avner's career as a diplomat in the UK and Australia before returning to Israel to work with Yitzhak Rabin not long before his assassination in 1995, after he had been elected a second time as Israel's Prime Minister.
Starring the voices of Michael Douglas as Yitzhak Rabin and Christoph Waltz as Menachem Begin, The Prime Ministers: Soldiers and Peacemakers is full of emotion and rich history with rare, never-before-seen photos and film footage.
$10 in advance/$15 at the door
ROCK IN THE RED ZONE
December 19, 2015 @ 8pm
A film about music, romance and the Israeli spirit
The city of Sderot, located less than a mile from Gaza, is often associated with Kassam rockets and underground bomb shelters. But in Israel it is also known as the City of Music, home to a large number of musicians—many the children of North African immigrants—whose unique rhythms have transformed Israeli music while giving voice to their anger, despair and dreams of peace. Crossing the line between observer and participant, filmmaker Laura Bialis reveals the city’s heart and soul.
$10 in advance/$15 at the door
I Declare Allegiance
Sunday, November 15, 2015 @ 7pm
LINCOLN SQUARE SYNAGOGUE FILM CLUB
THE INSTITUTE FOR IDEAS AND IDEALS
A Film Screening following by a Presentation
Join us for a special evening. LSS film club presents our first film of the season, I Declare Allegiance, about an experimental unit in the IDF that supports young men from the haredi community. The documentary follows new recruits through eight months of basic training.
Following the film, we will hear from:
PROF. BENJAMIN ISH-SHALOM, President, Beit Morasha
MR. SHAI HERSHKOWITZ, Head of the Department for Jewish Identity and Values Programs, Beit Morasha
Beit Morasha implements many projects involving Jewish identity, values and ethics in the IDF.
$10 in advance/$15 at the door
ABOVE AND BEYOND
February 28, 2015
The story of a group of World War II pilots, mostly American, who volunteered to fight for Israel in its 1948 War of Independence. As members of “Machal”—volunteers from abroad—this ragtag band of brothers risked their citizenship, their futures and even their lives to help a fledgling nation under attack. They not only turned the tide of the war but also laid the groundwork for the Israeli Air Force. The film, produced by Nancy Spielberg, is the first major feature-length documentary to tell this inspiring but little-known story.
Following the film, we will hear from Rabbi Dr. Benjamin “Benny” Lau, Head of the Israel Democracy Institute’s Human Rights and Judaism in Action project and rabbi of the modern Orthodox Ramban Synagogue in southern Jerusalem.
“Rav Benny,” as he is known by students, is a noted thinker and bridge-builder, who speaks widely across Israeli media about Jewish and modern values. A Torah scholar and activist for social equality, Rabbi Lau is also the Director of Beit Morasha’s Center for Judaism and Society and its Institute for Social Justice.
A noted author, he has published scores of books and research articles on the Jewish heritage. His prolific writings focus on Jewish philosophy, issues of Halakhah and society, and the connection between Biblical, Mishnaic, and Talmudic sources and contemporary social and political realities.
January 3, 2015
In the toughest neighborhood in Jerusalem—a place of grinding poverty, unemployment, and despair where children quickly learn not to expect too much—stands one uncompromising third-grade Russian teacher. With rare empathy, determination and occasionally controversial teaching methods, Hamorah Irena refuses to let her students give up on themselves.
GLIMPSES INTO A CLOSED WORLD
Motza'ei Shabbat, November 8, 2014 at 8pm in the Beit Midrash
What is it really like to be a full-time yeshiva student at the renowned Ponevezh Yeshiva? For the first time, the world’s largest ultraorthodox seminary opens its doors to a camera crew. Ponevezh has a reputation as an elite institution of Torah learning, but among the 1200 students who choose to inhabit its world of constant study and prayer are also some fragile, confused young men. The filmmaker, a former student of the yeshiva (and one of the writers of the popular Israeli series Shtisel), captures authentic moments of commitment and hope along with sadness and loneliness in a place where an individual can be swept away by the crowd.
Ruchama and Tikva, two haredi women, embark on a journey to fulfill their dream of making movies. But they must struggle to find a balance between profound commitment to their religious community and loyalty to individual creativity. A compelling story of a teacher and a wig-maker struggling to make their voices heard within the strictures of their world.
Tisha B'Av Film Screening: Nicky's Family- Tuesday, August 5, 2014
LSS will have two showings of the film, Nicky's Family @ 2:15 and 5:30. The movie tells the nearly forgotten story of Nicholas Winton, an Englishman who organized the rescue of 669 Czech and Slovak children just before the outbreak of World War II. There is no admission fee but please register in advance.
Israel Through the Lens of Ma’aleh
Thursday, June 19 @ 6:45pm
The Ma'aleh School of Television, Film & the Arts in Jerusalem is the only film school in the world devoted to exploring the intersection of Judaism and modern life. Join us for an evening of short films made by Ma’aleh graduates offering three very different views of the Israeli experience.
Barriers is an intense drama about a young officer at a checkpoint who has only seconds to make a life-or-death decision.
Cornerstone is a documentary that probes the world of the Beit Midrash for those at its edges. What happens when you are stuck between success and failure, faith and doubt?
Getting Serious is a romantic comedy where she’s a “dos” (seriously religious) and he's “dati lite” but pretends to be more committed to win her heart. Can he pull it off?
The films will be presented by Ohad Domb, a graduate of Ma’aleh, who will speak about the school’s unique mission in exploring religious life in Israel. Ohad has worked as a location producer for the popular TV series Srugim and Shtisel and will answer questions about those series as well.
SRUGIM, Season 3
Sunday, October 6, October 20, November 3, 17, 24 @ 7:00 p.m.
The final—and some say best—season of the popular Israeli TV series about young, professional, Modern Orthodox singles searching for love and happiness in Jerusalem. Reconnect with the characters you’ve grown to love—or discover them for the first time! We’ll show three episodes at each screening. In Hebrew with English subtitles.
Screening on 5 Sunday nights in 2013
- October 6 - Episodes 1,2,3
- October 20 - Episodes 4,5,6
- November 3 - Episodes 7,8,9
- November 17 - Episodes 10,11,12
- November 24 - Episodes 13,14,15
Saturday night, November 9, 2013 @ 7:00 pm
The riveting story of Jakub Wexsler, a Catholic priest from Lublin, Poland, who seeks to “return” to a Jewish life in Israel after discovering that his Jewish parents perished in the Shoah. The only problem is, he can’t completely renounce his former beliefs. This presents a painful dilemma for his Israeli hosts, who just aren’t sure how to classify him.
The documentary raises poignant questions about faith, identity and the continuing reverberations of the Holocaust. Followed by a discussion about religious and psychological issues raised by this film.
Fill the Void
Saturday night, January 11, 2014 @ 7:00 pm
This acclaimed feature film—the New York Times called it “enthralling”—by Israeli director Rama Burshtein, is both an intimate look at Tel-Aviv’s Hassidic community from someone who resides within it and a perceptive social romance in the mold of Jane Austen.
Eighteen-year-old Shira must make a momentous decision after her elder sister dies in childbirth. What transpires is an authentic portrait of a particular world as well as a tender story about emotions and choices whose appeal is universal.
Shtisel – Episodes 1,2, 3
Saturday night, February 8, 2014 @ 7:30 pm
A new Israeli TV series by the creators of Srugim.
Set in Jerusalem’s Geula neighborhood, Shulem and Akiva Shtisel, father and son, find themselves “roommates” since the mother has died.
While Shtisel spotlights various elements of Haredi life, it also delves into all the struggles that everyone endures – the need for laughter and love, dealing with death, and the desire for companionship.
Here I Learned To Love
Monday, April 28, 2014 (Yom Hashoah) @ 8 pm
Two brothers, three mothers … a story left mostly hidden for nearly six decades. The documentary follows Avner and Itzik, men now in their 70s living in Israel, as they retrace their childhood journey through the nightmare landscape of Eastern Europe during World War II. Searching through memory and emotion for the true story of their survival, the brothers are finally able to connect to their past and the women who cared for them.
Shtisel - The Full Season
Due to popular demand we will be screening the remaining episodes of Shtisel on the following dates:
March 23: episodes 7 & 8
March 30: episodes 9 & 10
April 6: episodes 11 & 12