JxJ | Washington Jewish Film Festival
May 12–22

Presented by the Edlavitch DCJCC, JxJ is a multidisciplinary arts project that encompasses the Washington Jewish Film and Music Festivals, alongside hybrid arts programming. One of the largest and most respected Jewish film festivals in North America, the Washington Jewish Film Festival (WJFF) celebrates the diversity of Jewish history, culture and experience through the moving image with a robust lineup of international film premieres, Q&As, panel discussions and sneak previews.

For complete listings, and to purchase tickets and festival passes, visit jxjdc.org

All screenings listed below take place at AFI Silver Theatre.

No AFI Silver Member passes accepted.

2021 Oscar® Selection, Israel
Washington, DC-Area Premiere
Sami, a middle-class Palestinian telecom executive, returns to his childhood village for his younger brother's wedding. As he starts his journey back to Jerusalem with his wife and child, he discovers the villagers have been placed under military siege. When the power goes out, too, Sami is left to ponder his life choices and whether his sense of security as an Israeli citizen has been nothing but an illusion. Based on Sayed Kashua's novel, Eran Kolirin's (THE BAND'S VISIT) new film, which premiered at Cannes last year, offers an acerbic, if whimsical, view of the conflict. DIR/SCR Eran Kolirin; PROD Ra'anan Gershoni, Keren Michael, Tamar Mozes-Borovitz, Nadav Palti, Jonathan Paran. France/Israel, 2021, color, 101 min. In Arabic and Hebrew with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sat, May 21, 6:15 p.m.
For additional screenings at other venues visit jxjdc.org

Washington, DC-Area Premiere
Six-year-old Sero lives in a Kurdish community near the Syrian-Turkish border in the early 1980s. He is extremely fond of his neighbors, the last Jewish family in a village where Jews and Kurds once peacefully coexisted. When he begins Arabic school, Sero is inundated with the fiery nationalism of a new teacher who demands that Arabic replace Kurdish in the home and propagates antisemitism to his impressionable charges. NEIGHBOURS draws from the director's own personal experiences, delicately balancing youthful nostalgia with themes of impending tyranny under the Assad regime. DIR/SCR/PROD Mano Khalil. France/Switzerland, 2021, color, 124 min. In Hebrew, Arabic, Kurdish and Turkish with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sat, May 21, 8:30 p.m.
For additional screenings at other venues visit jxjdc.org

Mid-Atlantic Premiere
An athlete tries to reconcile his sexual identity with dreams of becoming a world champion in this sensual, strikingly filmed drama. Erez, a young Israeli swimmer, arrives at a training camp hoping for a shot at the Olympics. He strikes up a friendship with a chief competitor, hoping it will blossom into something more. Inspired by his travails as a gay swimmer, writer-director Adam Kalderon pits the discrimination and toxic masculinity of the hyper-competitive sports world against a private story of acceptance. DIR/SCR Adam Kalderon; PROD Mika Kalderon, Naama Pyritz. Israel, 2021, color, 85 min. In Hebrew with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sun, May 22, 2:30 p.m.
For additional screenings at other venues visit jxjdc.org

Opening Night Selection, Mid-Atlantic Premiere
ROSE (2021)
Actress and screenwriter Aurélie Saada makes her directorial debut with this life-affirming reminder that it's never too late in life to seek fulfillment. The joys of celebrating the birthday of the Goldberg family patriarch give way to sorrow as his sudden death leaves his devoted wife, Rose (screen legend Françoise Fabian, who played the title role in Éric Rohmer's 1969 classic MY NIGHT AT MAUD'S) uncertain of how to navigate life as a widow. Her family offers little solace, but gradually Rose begins to advocate for her wishes and pursue her desires, rejecting the societal pressure to "act her age" and fade into oblivion. Similar in concept to Sebastián Lelio's crowd-pleasing GLORIA, but with its own cultural specificity and a career-crowning turn from Fabian, ROSE took home the Variety Piazza Grande Award at the 2021 Locarno Film Festival. DIR/SCR Aurélie Saada; SCR Yaël Langmann; PROD Priscilla Bertin, Judith Nora, Elsa Rodde. France, 2021, color, 102 min. In French and Yiddish with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sun, May 22, 4:30 p.m.
For additional screenings at other venues visit jxjdc.org

Washington, DC-Area Premiere
A long-forgotten hero's story is unearthed in this riveting and lavishly produced docu-drama. The last surviving member of the Jewish Red Army partisans, Ukrainian Leonid Berenshtein was a decorated anti-Nazi fighter who sabotaged German train transports and tracked down Hitler's secret V-2 doomsday missile facility. Evocatively employing flashbacks and stirring reenactments, Berenshtein recounts battlefield atrocities, lost love and fateful choices. Most profoundly, the aging partisan gives voice to his fateful decision to refuse orders and break into a German prison to release Jews sentenced to death. DIR Roman Shumunov; SCR Simon Shechter; PROD Ronen Machlis-Balzam, Emanuel Shechter. Israel, 2021, color, 110 min. In German, Polish, Russian and Ukrainian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sun, May 22, 6:50 p.m.
For additional screenings at other venues visit jxjdc.org