From Israel, With Tsuris

. . . which can be loosely translated as agita for all you non-Jews-or-New-Yorkers out there. (Hey, as Lenny Bruce said, if you're from New York you're Jewish even if you're goyish, if you're from Montana you're goyish even if you're Jewish.)

Actually, this year's Israel Film Festival, which kicks off on the 5th, is the usual mixed bag, as festivals of new film generally are. The good seems to outweigh the bad -- hey, I didn't see everything they're showing -- but that is to be expected in these halcyon days for Israeli film. So there really isn't much tsuris, except of course for the constant low-level aggravation that comes from living in the midst of an embattled place like the Middle East. At any rate, you can find my two pieces on the Festival in Jewish Week, here and here.

Incidentally, one of the most exciting prospects from the festival, a three-hour documentary History of Israeli Cinema by the excellent Raphael Nadjari (director of Tehillim and Avanim, two terrific films) isn't reviewed in those two articles; the only screeners available didn't have subtitles. I hope to add something on that and two other films from the event that arrived the day after my deadline in the next few days right here. (And that was the tsuris, entirely mine and I'm not passing it along, you should only live and be well, dah-link. But why don't you call more often?)

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