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Baklava and The Meaning of Life
USA, 1999, 23 minutes, color
Directed by Jamil Simon

Where does one find the meaning of life? Perhaps in the kitchen of Iraqi-born sculptor Helene Simon, where she discusses her life and shows us how to make her famous Baklava. More

Braids (Tzamot)
Israel, 1989, 90 minutes, color
Hebrew with English subtitles
Directed by Yitzhak Halutzi
16mm DVD
Based on a true story, Braids tells the tale of So'ad, a 14-year-old Jewish girl imprisoned by the Iraqi government in 1947 for her participation in the Zionist movement. More

Expulsion and Memory
Canada, 1996, 60 minutes, color
Directed by Simcha Jacobovici and Roger Pyke
This documentary traces the descendants of Spanish Jews who were forced to either flee or convert to Catholicism after Queen Isabella's edict of 1492. Many of these Jews had to practice their religion in secret, passing their furtively-recalled customs down through the generations. More

Father's Footsteps (Comme Ton Pére)
France/Israel, 2007, 95 minutes, color
French & Hebrew with English subtitles
Directed by Marco Carmel

In the early 1970s, the Maimons, a rambunctious but tight knit Tunisian-Israeli family, settle in Paris seeking adventure and fortune. Israeli-French filmmaker Marco Carmel draws on events from his own childhood in this unusual coming of age story. Starring French celebrity actor/humorist Gad Elmaleh. More

Fiestaremos! Judy Frankel and the Sephardic Music Tradition
USA, 2008, 30 minutes, color
English with songs in Ladino
Directed by Kathleen Regan
Judy Frankel was one of the leading collectors and practitioners of Sephardic folk music. Fiestaremos! includes interviews with Frankel, musical excerpts and performances in an intimate look at Frankel and Sephardic music and songs. More

Girona: The Mother of Israel, The Jews of Catalonia
USA, 1989, 30 minutes, color
Directed by Patricia Giniger Snyder
This film documents Jewish daily life in Girona, a city in the northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia, from its “golden age” in the middle ages through the expulsion of Spanish Jewry in 1492 and up to the present day. More

The House on Chelouche Street (Ha-Bayit Berechov Chelouche)
Israel, 1973, 115 minutes, color
Hebrew with English subtitles
Directed by Moshe Mizrahi
This Academy Award-nominated feature focuses on Sami, a teenager from a newly-arrived, poor Sephardic family living in the slums of Palestine during the turbulent last days of the British Mandate. More

Israel, 1973, 95 minutes, color
English dubbed
Directed by Menahem Golan
This Israeli West Side Story unfolds when Kazablan, a dark-skinned Sephardic Jew, takes time out from hassling the poverty-stricken tenants of the Jaffa ghetto to court the fair-skinned Rachel, an Ashkenazi Jew. More

I Love You, Rosa (Ani Ohev Otach Rosa)
Israel, 1972, 84 minutes, color
Hebrew with English subtitles
Directed by Moshe Mizrachi
Academy Award nominee, Best Foreign Film. Jerusalem's Orthodox community at the turn of the century is the setting for this now-classic film about the life of a young Sephardic widow. More

I Miss the Sun
USA, 1984, 20 minutes, color
Directed by Mary Halawani
16mm DVD
Halawani profiles her grandmother, Rosette Hakim, the daughter of a prominent Egyptian-Jewish family who fled her homeland in 1959 when Egyptian anti-Zionist sentiments increased and when hundreds of Jews, suspected of pro-Communist activities, were interned in detention camps. More

Island of Roses: The Jews of Rhodes in Los Angeles
USA, 1995, 55 minutes, color
English, Italian, French and Ladino with English subtitles
Directed by Gregori Viens
This film visits the Los Angeles community of “Rhodeslis”—Jews who lived on the Mediterranean island of Rhodes from 1492 to World War II—who have passed down their traditions, food, songs, rituals, and their medieval Ladino Spanish dialect to their American-born descendants. More

Jews of the Spanish Homeland (Los judíos de patria española)
Spain, 1929, 13 minutes, B&W
Silent with new English intertitles

Produced by Ernesto Giménez Caballero
35mm 16mm DVD
Shot in the 1920s, this film visits Sephardic communities in Salonika, Constantinople, Yugoslavia, and Romania as well as former centers of Jewish life in Spain. More

The Last Marranos (Les derniers Marranes)
France, 1991, 64 minutes, color
Portuguese with English subtitles
Directed by Frédéric Brenner and Stan Neumann
Despite being forcibly converted to Christianity in 1497 many of the Jews of Portugal continued to practice Judaism in secret. Today, residents of the village of Belmonte practice an amalgam of Christian and Jewish rituals. More

Nana: Un Portrait
USA, 1972, 23 minutes, color
French with English subtitles
Directed by Jamil Simon
16mm DVD
80 year-old Louise Zilkha reminisces about her traditional Jewish upbringing in Baghdad, Iraq, the often turbulent coexistence of Iraqi Jews and Moslems, and the persecution that led her family on a journey from Iraq to Beirut, to Cairo, and finally, to New York. More

Pillar of Salt (Natziv Hamelech)
Israel, 1980, 58 minutes, color
Hebrew with English subtitles
Directed by Haim Shiran
16mm DVD
Based on the autobiographical novel by sociologist Albert Memmi, this feature film about an expressive and intelligent 13-year old boy captures the cultural richness and social complexity of a Jewish boy's life in Tunisia, North Africa. More

Rhodes Forever (Rhodes nostalgie)
Belgium, 1995, 60 minutes, color/b&w
Spanish, French, Italian and Greek with English subtitles
Directed by Diane Perelsztejn
16mm DVD
Portrait of the Jews of Rhodes, whose ancestors found refuge there after their expulsion from Spain in the 15th century. For five centuries, Jews lived in Rhodes until their community was destroyed during World War II. More

The Sabbath Bride
UK, 1987, 52 minutes, color
Directed by Naomi Gryn
16mm DVD
Celebrate the excitement and diversity of Shabbat in London. Gryn mixes chicken soup, cholent, and music with interviews with rabbis and members of Orthodox, Reform, Sephardi, and Ashkenazi communities. More

Underdogs: A War Movie (Beit Shean: Seret Milhamah)
Israel, 1996, 86 minutes, color
Hebrew with English subtitles
Directed by Doron Tsabori & Rino Zror
Soccer mania hits a small working-class Israeli town near the Jordanian border, and the local team prepares for their last crucial game of the season against the national champions from Haifa, exacerbating conflicts between rich and poor. More

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