Jan 6, 2021

Fifth Annual Screening the Holocaust Film Series

The Miami Jewish Film Festival and The Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies, the Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach, and the Holocaust Teacher Institute at the University of Miami are proud to announce their fifth annual Screening the Holocaust Film Series. Due to the continued impacts of the COVID-19 health crisis on Miami-Dade County, this year’s program will be entirely hosted online on the Festival’s Virtual Screening Room and will be made available for free to all residents of Florida.

The program kicks-off on Sunday, January 31 at 2pm with a special presentation of the award-winning animated film The Tattooed Torah, which features narration from television legend Ed Asner. The virtual event will also include a panel discussion with Ed Asner and director Marc Bennett, which will be moderated by Dr. Miriam Klein Kassenoff, the founder and director of the Holocaust Teacher’s Institute.

Based on the beloved children's book of the same name, The Tattooed Torah details the harrowing and inspirational story of a Torah rescued during the Holocaust, eventually finding a new home at a day school in the United States.

The Screening the Holocaust Film Series will continue through the month of February presenting films with distinct voices and engrossing tales to recount, including Exit: Music, a poignant documentary about the music and artists lost to the Third Reich, and Shores of Light, which focuses on women whose parents survived the Holocaust and arrived in post-World War II Italy before beginning their trek to the new nation of Israel. The series will conclude with Ken Burns & Artemis Joukowsky’s critically acclaimed film Defying the Nazis, which is narrated by Oscar-winner Tom Hanks and tells the previously untold story of the daring rescue mission that occurred on the precipice of World War II.

At this time of incredible challenge and change brought on by the global pandemic, these films celebrate our resilience, our diversity, and our capacity for creativity and inspiring tolerance and cultural understanding. For us, each of these films is a testament to the necessity and power of filmmaking, and we cannot wait for our audiences to discover and rediscover them. If you value this program and all that MJFF provides year-round to our community, then consider supporting us by donating or becoming a Member today so we can continue educating our community through our dynamic programs.

All the films presented in the Screening the Holocaust Film Series will be accompanied by a virtual discussion with the film’s director and other special guests. You can find the complete virtual film program below:

The Tattooed Torah (2020)

Based on the beloved children's book of the same name, The Tattooed Torah details the harrowing and inspirational story of a Torah rescued during the Holocaust, eventually finding a new home at a day school in the United States. Click here to Watch Now!

Exit: Music (2016)

Thousands of musicians were forced to flee Europe because of the rise of the Third Reich, and Exit: Music focuses on five composers whose work had all but disappeared as a result. Their lost compositions are now performed by the ARC Ensemble, who have spent the last decade restoring their unknown masterpieces to the repertoire. The film will be available to stream starting Wednesday, February 10.

Shores of Light (2015)

Filmed on location in Southern Italy, Shores of Light tells the unknown true story of thousands of survivors who ended up in the region of Salento en route to what was then Palestine. Welcomed by the local population, which was economically poor but rich in human compassion, many of the refugees stayed, married, and had children before eventually moving on to their intended destination. The film will be available to stream starting Wednesday, February 17.

Defying the Nazis (2016)

Defying the Nazis is an account of a daring rescue mission that occurred on the precipice of World War II. Narrated by Academy Award-winner Tom Hanks, it tells the previously untold story of Waitstill and Martha Sharp, an American minister and his wife from Wellesley, Massachusetts, who left their children behind in the care of their parish and boldly committed to a life-threatening mission in Europe. The film will be available to stream starting Wednesday, February 24.

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