HomeNovember 2015OC Jewish Arts Festival

OC Jewish Arts Festival

1115filmreviewEach year a dedicated committee of culture-savvy-enthusiasts comb through many stories of Jewish culture to showcase in the annual OC Jewish Arts Festival.

Seeking to enthrall and inspire audiences, we review over a hundred movies and select four to screen. Below is a sneak preview of the best of the best.

“Above and Beyond”

Choosing this movie was, as they say, a “no-brainer.” Set in 1948 when Israel declared independence, this true story is spellbinding. Whether you are learning more about the IDF (Israeli Defense Force) or brushing up on Israeli history, this is an important film for you. And we are thrilled that the film’s executive producer, Nancy Spielberg, sister to “the” Steven Spielberg and a star in her own right, will join the audience for the viewing and a Q&A.

“Beneath the Helmet: From High School to the Home Front”

This film is a must see! You will smile, laugh, and cry as you get to know five young Israeli soldiers training to become part of an elite unit of paratroopers. They are amazing young adults, their backgrounds are as varied as the Israeli terrain, and their stories are compelling. This film will fill you with pride and hope for the future of Israel. I cannot say enough about how important this movie is for American Jews to see. Great for all ages…

“50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus”

The author of the book, who is the writer, director and producer of the film as well, Steven Pressman, joins us for the screening and a discussion. This will be a real treat. The story of redemption is set in the background of the Holocaust. The real life actions of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus are nothing short of amazing and a story that needs to be told!  We selected this movie because of its important message to mankind, Jews and non-Jews. The Kraus’, an American couple safely tucked away in Philadelphia, risked their lives to save helpless children in Europe. Would you be so brave? The film is good enough to see on its own, but with the book available for autographing and the opportunity to hear from and ask questions of the man who researched and wrote about this true story, well… it is something you shouldn’t miss.

“Life and Hummus”

Who knew that hummus is the “glue” that holds the Middle East together? This movie showcases a local OC’er, Alex Matros, and it is really, really great. You will learn the history of hummus and its origin… or origins…or… Who has the best hummus in Israel and the West Bank? Come and find out for yourself! We will have a hummus-tasting along with this documentary and discussion with film producer Rick Matros.

For the schedule and tickets, visit the 2015 OC Jewish Arts Festival at www.JCCOC.org. 


“Above and Beyond”
Thursday, Nov. 12, 7 p.m.

Documentary/history, 90 minutes. Film followed by Q&A with producer Nancy Spielberg.

“Beneath the Helmet: From High School to the Home Front”
Monday, Nov. 16, 7 p.m.

Documentary, 80 minutes.
English, Hebrew with subtitles.

“50 Children: The Rescue
Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus”

Wednesday, Nov. 18, 8 p.m.

Documentary, 62 minutes.
Narrated by Alan Alda.
Film followed by Q&A
with director and writer
Steven Pressman.

“Life and Hummus”
Thursday, Nov. 19, 7 p.m.

Documentary, 40 minutes.
Film followed by Q&A with producer Rick Matros.

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