Toronto Jewish Film Festival Varsity Cinema (Bay and Bloor), Bloor Cinema (506 Bloor West), Al Green Theatre (Miles Nadal jcc, 750 Spadina). $10, srs/stu $6, opening night $20, weekday matinees $6, all-you-can-sit-passes $200, regular deal pass $125, weekday special pass $60. Box office 416-324-9121, www.tjff.com. For complete schedule, see Repertory Cinemas, page 101. Rating: NNNNN
The Toronto Jewish Film Festival is not just for Jews. Anyone looking for honest entertainment and more than just popcorn fodder, take note. With 94 films to choose from, the 2004 TJFF has something for everyone, from lesbian and general dating woes in Germany ( Berlin Beshert , Sunday, May 2, 4:15 pm, JCC) to mobsters and mortality in Amsalem's Tears , starring Israel's answer to Robert De Niro, Moshe Ivgi (Sunday May 2, 8:30 pm, JCC). It screens with The Postwoman , in which Broken Wings' tireless mother, Orly Silbersatz Banai , is in fine form as a lonely mail carrier whose life changes when she intercepts a potential match-making letter. And not to be missed is Round Trip , the story of a wife who leaves home to find herself and discovers more than she bargained for (Wednesday, May 5, 9:45 pm, Bloor). Documentaries abound, notably Impact Of Terror (Monday, May 3, 5:30 pm, Bloor; see interviews, this page), The Chosen People , a fascinating, objective look at Toronto's Messianic Jewish "believers" versus the Jews for Judaism movement (Sunday, May 2, 5:30 pm, Bloor) and the opening-night film, Behind Enemy Lines (Saturday, May 1, 9:30 pm, Varsity), in which director Dov Gil-Har reunites old friends Benny and Adnan, one a Jewish police officer, the other a Palestinian journalist, and follows along as they visit cherished personal landmarks in an attempt to let each man take a walk in the other's shoes.
So many good films, not enough exposure. Make the time.