The dedication of the TJFF staff in bringing Toronto audiences the very best Jewish-themed cinema from around the world is remarkable.
I’m honoured to be a part of the 2017 team, after joining TJFF as a juror and panel moderator last year, and this anniversary season has produced an outstanding line-up.
In the “short and sweet” category, TJFF audiences will love some of the short documentaries. The “sweetest” of these, The Last Blintz, is a must-see, poignant look at the final days of the famous Café Edison in the heart of Times Square by New York-based documentarian Dori Berinstein.
Arts lovers interested, as I am, in the connection between Jewish music and jazz will be intrigued by Body and Soul: An American Bridge, which uses one of the most famous standards from the Great American Songbook to investigate the inherent Jewishness of 20th-century music.
There are also very different types of comedy represented in this year’s selections: the hilarious and fast-paced The Last Band in Lebanon; the beautiful indie dramedy Love is Thicker Than Water; or the charming, haymishe The Pickle Recipe.
Finally, to help commemorate the 150th anniversary of Confederation, the Festival celebrates this country’s most famous Jewish writer, the notorious and immensely talented Mordecai Richler. The Richler archival series, featuring rare TV and film adaptations that were originally released decades ago, will introduce a new audience to his iconic stories.