Third Annual Israeli Russian Film Festival

The Russian American Cultural Center in New York established the world’s largest and unique Annual Israeli Russian Film Festival.

Event Venue:

Tribeca Film Center
375 Greenwich Street

Event Date:

December 16, 2012

December 16, 2012, 11:30 AM to 8:00 PM

Festival's Special Guest: Sharon Bar-Ziv, director of ROOM 514.
The 2012 Israeli Russian Film Festival honors veteran filmmaker Mikhail Kalik for his outstanding contribution to art of cinema. *Mikhail Kalik* was one of the figureheads of the Soviet poetic cinema of 1960s, and also one of the few filmmakers who refused to forget his Jewish roots. His films, especially Man Follows the Sun (1961) and Goodbye, Boys (1964), left an indelible mark on the generation of audiences and filmmakers at the time. But Soviet regime increasingly censored Kalik's work, ultimately forcing the director to emigrate. After Kalik left for Israel in 1971, his films were taken off the screens and he became persona non-grata. This is why this important filmmaker is forgotten at home and is almost entirely unknown in the West. Featuring Kalik and his work at the Israeli-Russian Film Festival is an attempt to restore his rightful place in the history of Soviet and Jewish film, and to pay a tribute to a great director.

And the Wind Returneth | И возвращается ветер by Mikhail Kalik* 1991, 133 min, Russian with English subtitles
And the Wind Returneth is a cinematic autobiography of Mikhail Kalik. His unique and beautiful film encompasses the whirlwind of Jewish experiences in Soviet Russia—the purges of 1930s, the Great War, the GULAGs and anti-Semitic repressions of late Stalinism. Finally, it takes us to the awakening of Jewish consciousness and an exodus from mother-Russia. Kalik made this film already as an Israeli director, on the invitation of the Soviet authorities. Symbolically, And the Wind Returneth was one of the last Soviet films ever. In 1991, the USSR ceased to exist. But the film remained, and it is for us today a rich source of memory of the complicated and dramatic Soviet-Jewish history.

Kalik in Black, White, and Color by Semen Vinokur Documentary, 2004, 62 min, Russian and Hebrew with English subtitles
Semion Vinokur also a filmmaker and an immigrant from Russia to Israel, directs this sensitive and nuanced biography of his favorite director. In addition to compelling interviews, Vinokur weaves in archival segments and excerpts from Kalik's films, which serve as a rich illustration of the director’s tumultuous life. The result is a complex exploration of Kalik’s personal and artistic trajectory within both Soviet and Israeli societies, and a contemplation of tragic loss intrinsic to immigration.

Q&A session with Professor Olga Gershenson - 3:15 PM

Documentary Program: From Israel with Love - Fragments by Yonatan Haimovich 2009, Israel, Documentary, 50 min Original language: Hebrew, Russian. Language of voice-over: Hebrew. Subtitles: English.
A filmmaker Yonatan Haimovich says, "I was born in Israel, I grew up in Jerusalem, but I am still nostalgic for things Russian…" Haimovich inherited his nostalgia from his parents and their friends - Russian refuseniks, poets, and intellectuals - who came to Israel in 1970s. Now, thirty years later, Haimovich returns to the neighborhood of his childhood with his camera and captures on screen the "Russian" island floating in the sea of ultra-Orthodox life of contemporary Jerusalem. This internationally-acclaimed film is in part a visual poem and in part a love letter of the young filmmaker to this unique community.

Special Guest Presentation: Semyon Pinkhasov -
Sports and Peace by Semyon Pinkhasov 2012, USA, Documentary, 34 min, English

Director Semyon Pinkhasov explores the role of sports in the daily lives of the diverse young generation of Israel and the West Bank. The film shows three groups of young people: West Bank participants in the martial arts program, a soccer team from a Bedouin village, training together and competing with Israeli teenagers, and young disabled swimmers training for the Special Olympics. Can sport be a channel for a peaceful future in the Middle East?

Q&A session with Semyon Pinkhasov. *5:00 PM

Special Guest Feature - Room 514.
by Sharon Bar-Zi 2012, Feature Narrative, 90 min, in Hebrew, Russian with English subtitles
Cast: Asia Neifeld, Guy Kapulnik, and Udi Persi

Festivals/Awards - Rotterdam Film Festival 2012 "Bright Future", Tribeca Film Festival 2012 - Best New Narrative Director, Cannes Film Festival 2012 - "ACID", Zerkalo Film Festival 2012 - Special Prize, Granada IFF Cine del Sur 2012 Silver Alhambra de Plata Award for Best Director Feature Film, Karlovy Vary International Film Festival 2012 - "Another View", etc.

When a young, idealistic Israeli military investigator confronts an elite soldier with accusations of unnecessary violence against a Palestinian man at the checkpoint, her integrity and determination are put to the test as the case proves less black and white than it originally seemed. Taking a stand against a perceived abuse of power in spite of her colleagues' advice to back off because of the political complexities of the case, her increasingly zealous quest for justice ends up having far-reaching consequences for everyone involved. The titular interrogation room - where the majority of the film is set - stands in for a microcosm of contemporary Israel, with the limited setting also serving to highlight the superb dramatic turns by lead actors Asia Neifeld, Guy Kapulnik, and Udi Persi. Inspired by real events, director Sharon Bar-Ziv's debut feature is a gritty minimalist drama that provides a raw, direct look at the psyche of a generation of young Israelis shaped by the effects of the ongoing conflict. The film also introduces a new twist in portrayal of Russian female immigrant in contemporary Israel.

7:00- 7:30 Panel Discussion - Introductory remarks by Dr. Regina Khidekel, Founder and curator of The Festival and Dean Movshovitz, Director of Film & Media, Consulate General of Israel in New York; Assemblymen Alex Brook-Krasny and Steven Symbrowitz, and Senator David Storobin. Panelists: David D'Arcy, critic, Screen International, Artinfo, Semyon Pinkhasov, Slava Tsukerman and Yehuda Herbst, Esq., former IDF officer in elite combat unit.

8:00 PM - Cocktail art Reception (by invitation)
At the Tribeca Studio, showcasing Artem Mirolevich's large scale oil paintings and works on paper inspired by Old Testament and Judaic Thought, and brilliant photography by Peter Ruprecht.

THE ONLY FILM FESTIVAL in the world dedicated to Russian films made in Israel is not being held in Moscow or Tel Aviv, but in a far less likely locale: New York.
"We are becoming a force. The festival is part of the creation of new forms of self-identification for Russian Jews worldwide"
– New York State Assemblyman Alex Brook-Krasny


December 28, 2012 - Russkaya Reklama
From Israel with Love by Vitaliy Orlov (in Russian):

Israel and Us: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow by Maya Pritsker (in Russian):
click here to read

December 21, 2012 - Russkaya Reklama
Mikhail Kalik and All Others by Vitaliy Orlov (in Russian):

December 15, 2012 - Voice of America
Russian Israel in Black & White and Color by Oleg Sulkin (in Russian):

Slava Tsukerman via - Israeli-Russian Festival in New York (in Russian)

Download the Event Program: