2021 Film Festival - JCC - Orlando

The Annual Central Florida Jewish Film Festival is a cinematic celebration of Jewish life, culture, and history.

2021’s selection of films explored a range of themes, following their protagonists from icy seas to distant stars. Yet no matter the setting, these stories remain at their core deeply human, delving into compelling questions of Jewish identity, memory, change, and more.


Check Out 2021’s Full Calendar

Interview with Festival Committee Member Harriet Weiss


This film will take place at the Orlando Science Center Digital Adventure Theater.

Winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the Seattle Jewish Film Festival, this directorial debut follows a young Israeli-American woman grappling with religion, love, and identity after her younger sister marries outside the faith. Becky Tahel’s intimate, deep and joyous investigation starts by asking “why marry Jewish?” and ends up exploring the subtler inquiry “why be Jewish?”. Through a series of conversations and trips, from Grenada—where her sister Gal has attended med school—to Israel–where she engages in conversations with locals and studies Torah–Becky’s 6-year journey shifts the very course of her life and gives an authentic voice to those struggling to fit in, find their purpose and identity, and own their individuality in a world that begs for assimilation.



In this Italian teen drama, interlacing past and present, the discovery of a puzzling photograph sparks a student to probe the history of Rome’s Jewish ghetto and the fate of a little girl. When Sofia finds an old snapshot in a neglected suitcase, she’s mesmerized by the child’s picture. As details emerge—the child’s name, separation from her parents during a Gestapo raid, and rescue by a nun—Sofia commits to honoring the girl’s memory by staging an original play with classmates and friends from a nearby Jewish high school. But first she must overcome objections of concerned parents. A talented ensemble injects youthful energy into this inspiring interfaith story about the importance of memory, coexistence and reconciling generational frictions. Audience Award Winner – Best Director, Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival.

Italy, 2020, 100 MIN, Directed by Giulio Base, In Italian with English Subtitles


Following her breakout hit Zero Motivation, Israeli writer-director Talya Lavie’s latest delivers another outlandish comedy, as bickering newlyweds stagger through a surreal odyssey across Jerusalem that’s reminiscent of Martin Scorsese’s After Hours. Wedded bliss is short-lived for the screwy couple, who clash within minutes of arriving at their lavish honeymoon suite, as jealousy erupts over an ex-girlfriend’s wedding gift. Determined not to jinx their marriage, the feisty bride drags her sheepish groom on a dizzying mission to set things right, confronting past lovers, smothering in-laws, unresolved emotions, and life choices. Nominated for 7 Israeli Academy Awards including Best Actress, HONEYMOOD’s wry, rapid-fire dialogue and spry central performances crackle with sharp wit, while Jerusalem’s vibrant cityscape is a perfect foil for the characters’ romantic foibles.

Israel, 2020, 90 MIN, Directed by Talya Lavie, In Hebrew with English Subtitles


World renowned wildlife photographer Amos Nachoum has one final photographic dream remaining–to photograph a Polar Bear underwater in the Canadian Arctic, while swimming alongside it. Winner of Best Documentary at the Israel Film Festival, and Audience Awards at San Francisco, Boston and Chicago Jewish film festivals, this stunning film follows the artist’s journey as he contemplates the series of unspoken events that drove him to the end of the world to find redemption. More than 10-years in the making, PICTURE OF HIS LIFE reunites the award-winning Dolphin Boy filmmakers to create a special work that explores the powerful relationship between man and nature, father and son, violence and peace. 

Preceded by:

WET DOG - NOVEMBER 15, 2021 AT 6:45 PM

Florida Premiere!

Soheil is 16 when his Jewish-Iranian family moves to Wedding, one of Berlin’s multicultural, mostly Muslim, neighborhoods. While the other kids listen to hip hop music, and the Wedding Tigers gang dominates the city with their graffiti and start fights with other local crews, Soheil hides his true origins. At night he becomes the writer “King Star,” covering the city in colorful tags and mural paintings; during the day, he flirts with Selma–one of the cool girls. One day, Soheil’s gang of friends decides to rob the local “Jew-lery”–as they call it–run by none other than Soheil’s parents. It’s then that Soheil must embrace who he is and where he comes from, with regular visits to the local library to learn about Judaism. Based on a provocative autobiography written twenty years ago, this edgy drama raises questions of cultural diversity, religious identity, and how they intersect with friendship–especially during the phase of rawness and exploration that are one’s teenage years.

Germany, 2021, 103 MIN, Directed by Damir Lukacevic, In German with English Subtitles

HERE WE ARE - NOVEMBER 16, 2021 AT 7:00 PM

This film will take place at the Orlando Science Center Digital Adventure Theater.

Nominated for 9 Israeli Oscars, with wins for Best Director, Screenplay, Actor, and Supporting Actor, this tender drama about a protective father’s road trip with his grown autistic son and the anguish of separation, is suffused with emotion and graced by deeply felt performances. Uri (Noam Imber) is too old to continue living with his father Aharon (Shai Avivi), a stubborn divorcee and Uri’s loving caregiver. But their cocooned, codependent situation is upended when Uri’s mother insists he enter a specialized facility to attain independence. Deeply reluctant to let go, Aharon escapes with Uri on an adventure-filled, often humorous trek. But with time catching up, both men must learn how to say goodbye in this wonderful and acclaimed work that has won 9 Jewish Film Festival Audience Awards to date, including Boston, Philadelphia, Miami, San Diego and Montreal.

Israel, 2020, 94 MIN, Directed by Nir Bergman, In Hebrew with English Subtitles

This festival is produced by Enzian Theater and the Roth Family JCC of Greater Orlando as part of the Cultural Festival Circuit and is supported by United Arts of Central Florida with funds from the United Arts Campaign and the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts, plus the following generous sponsors: Jeffery Weiss, Adam Littman, The Kleiman Family, Dolores Indek, Ellen and Simon Snyder, Sheryl & Julian Meitin, Jodi and David Krinker, Lisa & Eric Schwartz, Harriet Weiss, David and Yudit Greenberg.

Thank you to the2021 CFJFF committee members!

Harriet Weiss

David Greenberg

Dolores Indek

Jay Glick

Ken Davis

Laurence Richman

Randa Marder