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Movies We're Watching

during Chanukah this year!

The Jewish Film Institute (JFI) in San Francisco is offering 8 Jewish films for Chanukah, 7 of which are available online from Dec 10-17. Tickets are $10-$15 per online film, $40-$70 for festival online passes. All proceeds support the ongoing work of JFI. For more information, visit jfi.org, email boxoffice@jfi.org or call (415) 621-0568 weekdays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The films are:

 “When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit” is a sweeping, two-hour German drama about the rise of Nazism as seen through the eyes of a 9-year-old-girl in Europe. It’s the latest from Caroline Link, director of “Nowhere in Africa,” winner of the best international feature Oscar in 2003.

“Born in Jerusalem and Still Alive” is the festival’s Next Wave Spotlight film, an Israeli comedy selected for its appeal to young adults. Co-directors David Ofek and Yossi Atia, who also stars, find an absurdist angle on the social tensions and political violence of Israel 20 to 30 years ago.

“Sublet” is a romantic drama from Israel that’s been an audience favorite at other Jewish film festivals this year. Directed by Eytan Fox, it tells the story of an American travel writer who goes to Tel Aviv and is drawn into a relationship with a young film student.

“Oliver Sacks: His Own Life,” directed by Ric Burns, explores the life and work of a legendary neurologist and storyteller who had battles with drug addiction, homophobia and the medical establishment.

“Film About a Father Who” is a documentary by Lynne Sachs, who attempts to understand child-to-parent and sibling-to-sibling connections by using interviews, home movies and archival images to probe the personality of her bon vivant father, Ira Sachs Sr., over a period of 35 years.

“A Crime on the Bayou” is a gripping documentary by Nancy Buirski that recounts the true story of a Jewish lawyer who, in 1966 New Orleans, tirelessly pursued justice for a Black teenager wrongfully accused  of assault.

Also in the lineup is “Jews in Shorts,” a program of four shorter documentaries from both the U.S. and Israel.

Another free event that can be accessed online at any time during the festival is a virtual panel called “Engines of Truth.” Jewish filmmakers Amy Ziering, Bonni Cohen, Judith Helfand and Roberta Grossman will converse about how various factors — such as Jewish values, identity, culture and feminism — have figured into their groundbreaking documentaries.

Fri, January 22 2021 9 Shevat 5781