SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – Despite the fact that the Rialto Theater in Westfield closed with no advance notice, the JCC of Central New Jersey’s Jewish Film Festival will still take place as scheduled from Wednesday, Oct. 16 through Tuesday, Nov. 12. Its new location is the AMC Mountainside 10, 1021 Route 22 in Mountainside. All films start at 7:30 p.m.

For 15 years, the Jewish Film Festival has been a community staple bringing international films of all genres to the Jewish and larger communities. The JCC originally launched this festival in 2004 because of its reputation for outstanding arts & education programming and the local population’s demand for more. In 2009, responding to positive feedback and an appetite for more films, the JCC added a spring mini-series with two extra films. Now, 10 years later, the spring festival is also a regular part the of JCC arts & education programming. 

“There are so many wonderful films to choose from each year; it’s hard to narrow it down to just five,” said Randi Zucker, JCC Arts & Education Director. “Our audience loves everything from historical and current dramas to comedies and documentaries.”

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This fall brings five new films beginning on Wednesday, October 16 with Love in Suspenders, a light-hearted comedy about the encounter and relationship between two people with very different personalities – a relationship that has to result in a nightmare…but love has its own rules. 

On Wednesday, October 23, the documentary Back to Berlin is being screened.  In 2015, the European Maccabi Games were held in Germany for the first time since World War II.  This film follows 11 Israeli motor-bikers carrying the Maccabi torch from Tel Aviv to Berlin, each destination holding resonance for the riders.

Next up is The Other Story on Monday, Oct. 28. In this tale of broken relationships and forgiveness, complications arise when a dysfunctional Israeli family tries to lure their daughter away from Orthodox Judaism.

The Keeper, on Monday, Nov. 4, is the true story of Bert Trautmann, a German soldier and POW who, against a backdrop of British post-war protest and prejudice, secures the position of goalkeeper at Manchester City, and becomes a footballing icon.

Closing night, Tuesday, Nov. 12, features Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles, the story of Broadway sensation, Fiddler on the Roof, and its phenomenal impact around the world.  Interviews with Harold Prince, Jerry Bock, Chaim Topol, Harvey Fierstein, Fran Lebowitz and more.

Sharon Rockman, Film Festival Committee Co-Chair, shared that choosing the films is a yearlong process. “We meet every week to screen the films; we watch close to 30 films each season. During each festival, we ask the viewers to rate the films so we can keep our finger on the pulse of our audience.”

Thanks go to our film underwriters Evalyn Dunn Gallery in Westfield, Citrin Cooperman, Gitterman Wealth Management/ Elias and Susan Rauch, Doris Buttery and family and Renee and David Golush. Additional thanks go to all of our other Film Festival sponsors.

Join us for our 15th annual Jewish Film Festival! Visit www.jccnj.org for more information, movie trailers and pricing. Tickets can be purchased online at www.jccnj.org, by mail or in person at the JCC in Scotch Plains.

The Jewish Film Festival of Central NJ is made possible by funds from the Union County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs, a partner of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

The JCC of Central New Jersey is located at 1391 Martine Avenue in Scotch Plains. The JCC of Central New Jersey is a constituent agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ, United Way of Greater Union County and the Westfield United Fund. Financial assistance is available for membership and various programs.