Related Blog Posts on Film and Arts and Culture

Best Jewish Films of 2021

Wes Hopper
December 27, 2021
As 2021 draws to a close, it's a good time to reflect on the year in Jewish film and highlight six worthy of your attention. Two of the films here are from first-time filmmakers, another pair are Holocaust documentaries, and the final duo draw their tales from the past. Here is my list of the best Jewish films released in the U.S. in 2021.

Becoming Dr. Ruth

Wes Hopper
December 17, 2021
"Becoming Dr. Ruth" carefully and quite literally unpacks the turbulent early years of Dr. Ruth Westheimer -- Holocaust survivor, single mother, and eventual superstar sex therapist. At the same time, this one-woman show starring Tovah Feldshuh celebrates the possibilities of America, while never quite letting go of the past.

Film Review: Love It Was Not

Wes Hopper
November 1, 2021
Fresh off a nomination for best documentary at the Ophir Awards, the Israeli equivalent of the Oscars, Maya Sarfaty's new film, Love It Was Not, brings to American audiences the real-life tale of a love affair between a Jewish prisoner and her Nazi SS officer.

Film Review: Golden Voices

Wes Hopper
October 4, 2021
In Evgeny Ruman’s bittersweet new film, Golden Voices, a pair of aging voice actors find their lives in upheaval after immigrating to Israel from the former Soviet Union. Victor and Raya, (Vladimir Friedman and Maria Belkin), are not only in a new land with an altogether new language, but also at a crossroads in both career and marriage.

An Accounting of the Soul?

Rose Eichenbaum
August 31, 2021
A conversation with Ed Asner, z’l, died on August 29 at the age of 91. This article is adapted from The Actor Within (Wesleyan University Press).

Why We Need a “Spiritual Co-conspiratorship” for Justice

Yolanda Savage-Narva
July 12, 2021
During the 2020 uprising for Black lives, Yehudah was the lead organizer of the 40 Days of Teshuvah action that created a space of mourning the destruction of Black communities and crying out to the Heavens for spiritual co-conspiratorship in the fight for racial justice.

Final Account: Film Review

Wes Hopper
June 7, 2021
The film, produced by the USC Shoah Foundation, attempts to capture the recollections of an elderly subset of Germans who lived through the Third Reich and will soon no longer be around to give voice to what they witnessed.

A Bittersweet Reunion with the Shtisel Family

Rabbi Sharon G. Forman
April 13, 2021
Sometimes the acting ends in joy and other times the results are devastating. Ultimately, the writers and actors draw us into their stories so that we cannot deny that art can elicit understanding, peace, and even deep love.

7 Movie Stars Who Have Played Israeli Prime Ministers

Gabe Friedman (JTA)
April 12, 2021
Just a month after it was announced that the Israeli star Shira Haas would portray Meir in a TV series, The Hollywood Reporter revealed this week that Oscar winner Helen Mirren would portray Israel’s only female prime minister in an upcoming biopic.