The Film List


Feb. 20: Film Comment Selects. The acclaimed bimonthly magazine’s annual event kicks off with “Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films,” a documentary that looks back at the shenanigans and craziness of Menachem Golan and Yoram Globus. When the two Israeli schlockmongers hit Hollywood in the ’80s they helped to make it the worst decade in American film history. Weirdly, this is the second film on display this year chronicling their, er, exploits; the first one, “The GoGo Boys,” played the Jewish festival last month. The festival will also include a retrospective screening of Mike Nichols’ “The Fortune,” an oddball farce in which Warren Beatty, Jack Nicholson and Stockard Channing are channeling the spirits of the Three Stooges. Walter Reade Theater (Lincoln Center;

Feb. 23: “Hidden Stars of David: Neglected Gems of Jewish Film.” A series of three film programs at the 92nd Street Y with a program of eight under-appreciated cinematic slices of the Jewish experience. That program will be followed by a four-film showcase of recent Israeli films and another collection of “Hidden Stars.” Curated by Jewish Week film critic George Robinson. 92nd Street Y (92nd Street and Lexington Avenue),

Feb. 27: “Deli Man,” directed by Erik Greenberg Anjou. A sprightly, whimsical look at the fate of the Jewish deli in the new millennium, this documentary focuses on Houston-based restauranteur Ziggy Gruber, a charming guy with a lifelong love of Jewish food, while recounting the rise and fall of the deli. About as much fun as you will have in a movie this year, but eat first or you’ll go out of your mind. Landmark Sunshine Cinema (134 E. Houston St.) and Lincoln Plaza Cinema (1886 Broadway).

March 12: The 7th Annual ReelAbilities Film Festival. This splendid event just keeps growing. This year’s lineup runs the gamut of subject matter, with an impressive number of fiction features as well as the usual strong field of documentaries. At a time when a Fox News commentator can publicly say that there is no such thing as bipolar disorder, a presidential candidate can claim that people receiving disabilities payments are shirkers with back pain and ISIS can use mentally handicapped children as human bombs, it’s hard to imagine a more significant film event than this one. JCC in Manhattan (77th St. and Amsterdam Ave.),

March 16: The second annual Socially Relevant Film Festival. New York may not need another film festival, but this one certainly demands attention with its focus on films that “raise awareness [of] social problems and current issues.” Films from 30 different countries, including Israel and Palestine, with an emphasis on Middle East affairs. Screenings will take place at Tribeca Cinemas (54 Varick St.), Maysles Cinema (343 Malcolm X Blvd / Lenox Ave), and the Center for Remembering & Sharing (123 Fourth Ave.),

March 18: New Directors/New Films. Although the full line-up for this year’s ND/NF was unavailable at press time, we know for sure that at least one important Israeli film will be on display during the 44th annual program. Nadav Lapid, whose debut feature “Policeman” was a revelation, will be represented by his new film “The Kindergarten Teacher,” which has received rave reviews all over Europe. Museum of Modern Art (11 W. 53rd St., [212] 708-9400,

March 24: An evening with Manfred Kirchheimer. Kirchheimer is one of the unsung American documentarians. Although he is probably best known for his lovely evocation of the Jewish community of Washington Heights, “We Were So Beloved,” this program focuses on his more overtly political non-fiction films, with the U.S. premiere of “Canners,” his portrait of New York’s homeless population that lives by returning deposit bottles and cans, and his wonderful ode to urban graffiti, “Stations of the Elevated.” He will be present to take questions. BAMcinématek, Brooklyn Academy of Music (30 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn, [718] 636-4100,

March 27: “While We’re Young,” written and directed by Noah Baumbach. Baumbach’s latest exploration of urban creative angst focuses on a blocked filmmaker, Ben Stiller, who seemingly finds a new lease on life when he befriends a much younger couple. Theaters TBA.

April 15: Tribeca Film Festival. One of the most dependable showcases of new Israeli films, among other things, TFF is now in its 14th year. Always a great festival for Jewish-themed works, past years have included such gems as “My Father, My Lord” and “Zero Motivation.”

April 29: “Iris,” a documentary by Albert Maysles, profiles Iris Apfel, one of the great doyennes of fashion and the Jewish granny of your dreams. She’s smart, funny and mordant and at 93 still sharper than the vast majority of would-be geniuses in her business. Film Forum (209 W. Houston St., [212] 727-8110,

May: “Felix and Meira,” directed by Maxime Giroux. This Quebecois feature was given pride of place as the closing night film at this year’s New York Jewish Film Festival, and deservedly so. A low-key romantic drama that throws together a young, disaffected chasidic mom (the luminous Hadas Yaron) and a secular Jew in the midst of a midlife crisis (Martin Dubreuil). The film has a long fuse, but its subtleties are rewarding. Theaters TBA.