Tonight charts the beginning of the 15th UK Jewish Film Festival. The programme can be viewed here. It’s an eclectic schedule that spans over two and a half weeks and one which truly celebrates the meaning of Jewish film, in all its guises. Judy Ironside, the Festival’s founder and Executive Director, is right when she describes it as ‘a much anticipated event for so many people.’ Certainly this person anyway. I shall be attending the opening night gala which is screening This Must be the Place starring Sean Penn and Frances McDormand. The festival is also a great opportunity to experience the growing versatility and sophistication of Israeli film. A few weeks ago I interviewed Israeli director Navot Papushado, who co-directedRabies, Israel’s first horror film. Even if you aren’t a fan of the genre, it’s worth seeing. To whet your appetite, you can read the interview here.
But what makes a good Jewish film? Is it simply storyline or a certain brand of humour? Do you have to be Jewish to make a Jewish film?