The 22nd Annual Virginia Festival of Jewish Film presented by Alma* and Howard Laderberg

 January 17, 2015 – January 25, 2015

*of Blessed Memory
2015 JFF-Web Image

The Virginia Festival of Jewish Film celebrates and supports International Jewish film and filmmakers, presenting the newest and best films worldwide. The Festival brings together community and provides entertainment and education through various film genres.Full Festival Pass – Opening Night Film and Reception are included in the Full Festival Pass in addition to the 6 films throughout the week and the Closing reception.
Date/Time Film/ Description
Sat. Jan, 17


Doors open at 6:45 pm

Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, 201 Market Street, Virginia Beach.

Reception following film.

Above and Beyond. Directed by Roberta Grossman, Produced by Nancy Spielberg.

Ms. Grossman will lead a brief discussion after the film before the reception.

2014|USA|89 minutes|In English and Hebrew with English subtitles.

The first major feature-length documentary about the foreign airmen in the ’48 War, just three years after the liberation of Nazi death camps, a group of Jewish American pilots answered a call for help. In secret and at great personal risk, they smuggled planes out of the U.S., trained behind the Iron Curtain in Czechoslovakia and flew for Israel in its War of Independence. This ragtag band of brothers not only turned the tide of the war; they also embarked on personal journeys of discovery, sacrifice and renewed Jewish pride.

Opening Night Film and reception sponsored by Patricia and Avraham Ashkenazi.

Special thanks to Leslie Siegel for Opening Night reception décor.

Dining delight with heavy hors d’oeuvres and desserts elegantly catered by Village Caterers.


Sunday, January 18


TCC Roper Performing Arts Center, 340 Granby Street, Norfolk

50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus. Directed by Steven Pressman

2013|USA|64 minutes|English

A Philadelphia couple managed to transfer unused visas to Jewish children trapped in the Third Reich in the spring of 1939. Gilbert and Eleanor Kraus embarked on a risky and unlikely mission, traveling into the heart of Nazi Germany, rescuing 50 Jewish children from Vienna and bringing them to the United States.

Director Steven Pressman will lead a live discussion after the film, where he will also present his same titled book.


Sunday, January 18


Beth Sholom Village, 6401 Auburn Dr., Virginia Beach

The Lady in Number 6. Directed by Malcolm Clarke

2014|Poland|37 minutes|English

Free Screening

The Lady in Number 6 is the inspirational and uplifting story of 109 year old Alice Herz Sommer, the world’s oldest pianist and Holocaust survivor. She shares her story on how to achieve a long and happy life. She discusses the importance of music, laughter and how to have an optimistic outlook on life.


Monday, January 19

10:30amSimon Family JCC, 5000 Corporate Woods Dr., Virginia Beach

An American Tail

Free Screening

This critically acclaimed full-length animated triumph chronicles the wide-eyed adventures of a courageous little mouse named Fievel Mousekewitz. Come see it at the J when your kids are out of school!

Tuesday, January 20

7:00pmBeach Movie Bistro, 941 Laskin Rd, Virginia Beach

Zero Motivation. Directed by Talya Lavie

2014|Israel|100 minutes|Hebrew with English subtitles

The Human Resources Office at a remote desert base serves as the setting for this cast of characters who bide their time pushing paper and battling in computer games, counting down the minutes until they can return to civilian life. Amidst their boredom and clashing personalities, issues of commitment – to friendship, love, and country – are handled with humor and sharp-edged wit in this zany, dark, and comedic portrait of everyday life for a unit of young, female Israeli soldiers.


Thursday, January 22


Naro Cinema, 1507 Colley Avenue, Norfolk

24 Days. Directed by Alexandre Arcady

2014|France|109 minutes|French with English subtitles

24 Days is the gripping, shocking tale of modern-day anti-Semitism based on the 2006 kidnapping of Ilan Halimi, a Parisian Jew, by a suburban gang who, believing all Jews are rich, demanded a huge ransom. This taut French drama follows the police and the frightened Halimi family for 24 days on the track of the kidnappers. Discussion after the film with area Rabbis and Alan Ronkin, a special guest from the AJC in Washington, DC and an expert on Anti-Semitism.


Saturday, January 24

7:00pmTCC Roper Performing Arts Center, 340 Granby Street, Norfolk

Cupcakes. Directed by Eytan Fox

2013|Israel|92 minutes|Hebrew with English subtitles

When a group of best friends in Tel Aviv gather to watch ‘UniverSong’, they are less than impressed by the official Israeli entry. Believing that they can do better, they spontaneously create and record their own song on a mobile phone. Little do they know, their performance is seen by the ‘UniverSong’ judges and soon they are reluctantly thrown into the spotlight as Israel’s next official entry. With a soundtrack provided by Babydaddy from Scissor Sisters, this hilarious comedy is a refreshing ode to music and friendship.


Sunday, January 25

5:30 pm

Closing Night Film Reception followed by film

TCC Roper Performing Arts Center|340 Granby Street, Norfolk

The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz. Directed by Ted Kotcheff

1974|USA|120 minutes

The younger son of a working-class Jewish family in Montreal, Duddy Kravitz yearns to make a name for himself in society. This film chronicles his short and dubious rise to power, as well as his changing relationships with family and friends. Along the way the film explores the themes of anti-semitism and the responsibilities which come with adulthood.

An Oscar nominated film, this is the annual selection of esteemed local critic Mal Vincent, who will be on hand to lead a lively discussion before the film. Be sure to come at 5:30 to enjoy the reception which precedes the film, elegantly catered by TCC Culinary Arts Students.



For additional information, contact Michele Goldberg, Director of Cultural Arts at 757-321-2341

Many thanks to everyone for our continued successful Film Festivals!

Please be sure to thank our sponsors, whose generosity help make the Film Festival possible.

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