Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu, move over.
For the first time in its 32-year history, the William and Irene Weinberg Family Baltimore Jewish Film Festival will be presented entirely virtually, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
From May 16 through June 10, the festival — presented by the Gordon Center for Performing Arts in Owings Mills and the Jewish Community Center of Greater Baltimore — will present a diverse array of films examining Jewish history, culture and heritage.
“This virtual festival will be available to the Baltimore Jewish community and our friends and family no longer local,” said Sara Shalva, the JCC’s chief arts officer. “Expanding and diversifying our audience is a silver lining of moving the festival online, and we are all thrilled to be able to cast a broader net. We do recognize that some patrons will not be able to or have the desire to watch the films from home. For those patrons, we are offering credit to next year’s festival.”
The films will feature a screening window time of 48 hours, with ticket holders receiving an email with a link and instructions on how to access films and join live discussions with guest speakers.
“In an effort to remain relevant and community-oriented, we are offering the wraparound programming including speakers and panels, and new this year we will also offer some drop-by-chat rooms,” Shalva said. “These Zoom spaces will be an opportunity to debrief the film with friends, sort of like an impromptu lobby conversation on the way out the door.”
Shalva said the festival’s 26 committee members viewed more than 60 films to curate this year’s event.
“This year’s films span the generations and the globe, from Israel and Mexico to Hungary and England. This festival is a celebration of diversity of film,” she said. “Our film festival program director, Sara Qureshi, has been working tirelessly to bring together community around the power of stories in film.”
The festival’s 11 films include:
- “Golda’s Balcony,” on Saturday, May 16, at 8:30 p.m. through Monday, May 18, at 8:30 p.m.
Virtual discussion with producer David Fishelson on Sunday, May 17, at 7 p.m.
- “Those Who Remained, on Monday, May 18, at 7 p.m. through Wednesday, May 20, at 7 p.m.
- “Love In Suspenders,” on Wednesday, May 20, at 7 p.m. through Friday, May 22, at 7 p.m.
- “Flawless,” on Saturday, May 23, at 8:30 p.m. through Monday, May 25, at 8:30 p.m.
Virtual discussion with authors Abby Stein and Jo Ivester on Sunday, May 24, at 7 p.m.
- “Leona,” on Monday, May 25, at 7 p.m. through Wednesday, May 27, at 7 p.m.
- “The Keeper,” on Tuesday, May 26, at 7 p.m. through Thursday, May 28, at 7 p.m.
Virtual discussion with Christopher Reed, Stevenson University, on Wednesday, May 27, at 7 p.m.
- “Witness Theater,” on Saturday, May 30, at 8:30 p.m. through Monday, June 1, at 8:30 p.m.
- “The Unorthodox,” Monday, June 1, at 7 p.m. through Wednesday, June 3, at 7 p.m.
- “1938 Different,” on Wednesday, June 3, at 7 p.m. through Friday, June 5, at 7 p.m.
- “Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles,” on Saturday, June 6, at 8:30 p.m. through
Monday, June 8, at 8:30 p.m.
- “After Munich,” on Monday, June 8, at 7 p.m. through Wednesday, June 10, at 7 p.m. This film has replaced “Tel Aviv On Fire.”