The Miami Jewish Film Festival Is Back!

The biggest Jewish cultural event in Florida is back and better than ever! The 23rd Annual Miami Jewish Film Festival (MJFF), which opened January 9th and runs through the 23rd, is showcasing 107 films from 25 different countries, setting a record this year for largest Jewish film program in the world.

Out of the films being offered this year, 29 are directed by women, another record for the MJFF. The films will be hosted at 14 different venues throughout Miami often with filmmakers and special guests attending.

The Festival is also inaugurating a Spotlight on Ibero-American Cinema featuring films from Argentina, Spain, and Brazil. The intent, as announced on the MJFF’s website, is to promote to film lovers in Miami a platform which “bridges cultural understanding and encourages artistic development.”

The festival kicked off last Thursday with the Opening Night Party which offered a reception and live music, followed by the world premiere of Saul & Ruby, To Live! where Director Tod Lending and film subjects Saul Dreier and Ruby Sosnowicz were in attendance. Classics like The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and new films like this year’s Israeli Academy Award entry for Best Foreign Language Film, Incitement, have already screened. If you missed them, however, don’t worry because there are still a lot of exciting films to look forward to until the 23rd when the festival officially comes to a close.

Personally, I’m excited for next Tuesday’s North American premiere of The Collini Case, a courtroom thriller drama starring Elyas M’Barek and Italian legend, Franco Nero; and the screening of The Painted Bird which was the Czech Republic’s official entry for the Oscar’s and is so shockingly dark that it needs a disclaimer.

For a full and more detailed schedule you can visit the MJFF’s website, and for updates and the latest information about the festival and attending filmmakers you can follow the Miami Jewish Film Festival on Facebook or Twitter (@MiamiJFF).

 Diana Gonzalez is a film enthusiast who insists on happy endings and avoids horror movies like the plague.