2017 Maine Jewish Film Festival

2017 Maine Jewish Film Festival

This film program is part of the Maine Jewish Film Festival. For tickets and information visit the festival's official website at mjff.org.

Sunday, March 19

11:30 a.m. - An American Tail (family program) FREE, registration required
An American Tail is fun for the whole family! In this animated classic, a young Russian mouse named Fievel emigrates to America, gets separated from his family and must find then, learning some valuable survival lessons along the way. 

1:30 p.m. - Blue Like Me + Hollow Land, followed by artist presentation
Filmmaker Hal Rifkin captures the transfixing artwork of Siona Benjamin in the film Blue Like Me. Born in Mumbai to a Jewish Family, Benjamin's boundary-crossing work synthesizes her Jewish roots with Hindu, Catholic, Muslim and Zoroastrian iconography of India.
This event also features the beautiful award-winning animated short film, Hollow Land.
Following the films, Ms. Benjamin will present and discuss her work.

Wednesday, March 22

11:30 a.m. - The Last Mentsch
Evocative cinematography and superb activing drive this poignant story of denial and destiny. Marcus Schwarz (German Academy Award winner Mario Adorf) escaped Auschwitz and spent a lifetime concealing his heritage in Germany. But when the rabbis demand proof he's really Jewish to purchase a plot in the local cemetery, he must return to his birthplace on the Hungarian-Romanian border and reckon with his identity.

1:30 p.m. - My Hero Brother FREE, followed by panel
Through the eye of the camera, we catch a glimpse into the internal world of those with Down syndrome, and are led on our own journey of discovery and admiration, as their inspiring natural qualities begin to emerge; wholesomeness, direct and honest emotional expression, and the capacity to feel and communicate unconditional love.

Thursday, March 23

1 p.m. - Harold and Lillian FREE, followed by reception
A fascinating and moving account of the romantic and creative partnership of storyboard artist Harold Michelson and film researcher Lillian Michelson: two unsung heroes of Hollywood's Golden Age. 

Friday, March 24

1 p.m. - Raise the Roof, followed by discussion with the film's Art Team Director, Krista Lima
Rivaling the greatest wooden architecture in history, the synagogues of 18th-century Poland inspired artists Rick and Laura Brown of Handshouse Studio to embark on a 10-year pursuit—to reconstruct the elaborate roof and painted ceiling of the Gwoździec Synagogue.

6 p.m. - Moos
A woman's life is about taking care of her ill father until a friend encourages her to start a life of her own.

Saturday, March 25

Noon - Doing Jewish: A Story from Ghana, followed by discussion with Portland City Councilor Pious Ali
Is there a difference between "being Jewish" and "doing Jewish?" Part of our "Welcoming the Other" Film Series, this film follows a young Canadian Jewish filmmaker as she attempts to find out in a remote Black African Jewish community in Ghana.

6:30 p.m. Peter the Third, followed by closing night reception
A  warm, cross-generational comedy guaranteed to make you smile, as a band of cantankerous Romanian-born retirees spend their days gossiping and complaining at their local café in Tel Aviv.