The Arty Semite

Friday Film: Hasidim in Love

By Ezra Glinter

Courtesy of Eve Annenberg

Eve Annenberg has finally hit the big time. After experiencing initial difficulties getting “Romeo & Juliet in Yiddish,” shown at Jewish Film Festivals (difficulties owing, in part, to a scene in the film with nudity), the movie premiered in January at the New York Jewish Film Festival, and receives a theatrical opening July 8 at the Film Society at Lincoln Center.

Just as significant, “Romeo & Juliet in Yiddish” has attracted the attention of marquee critics. A.O. Scott reviewed the film in today’s New York Times, and J. Hoberman — who knows a thing or two about Yiddish cinema — discusses it in this week’s Village Voice. Jon Kalish wrote about the film for the Forward as far back as June 2010, and again for The Arty Semite in January, and Eitan Kensky included a consideration of it in his recent article on the portrayal of Hasidim in movies. But Scott and Hoberman’s reviews provide fodder for further discussion.

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This Week in Forward Arts and Culture

By Ezra Glinter

Weinstein Brothers

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Will Film's Nudity Keep Hasidim Away From 'Romeo and Juliet in Yiddish'?

By Jon Kalish

Courtesy Eve Annenberg

Tongues have been clicking in the Orthodox world about the U.S. debut of Eve Annenberg’s feature film “Romeo and Juliet in Yiddish” (which I previously wrote about for the Forward here), but the New York Jewish Film Festival screening on January 16 at Lincoln Center sold out quickly and the Hasidic dropouts-turned actors who star in the film expect a huge black hat turnout.

On the frum woman’s web site imamother.com someone who grew up in Boro Park with former Satmar beauty Malky Weisz, who plays Juliet, posted: “I think this film is going to create a huge chilull ha shem [desecration of G-d’s name], even though I have no inkling as to what the story line is.”

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Out and About: Pearl Buck's Jewish Novel; Robert Moses, the Musical

By Ezra Glinter

Wiki Commons
  • Get ready for the Robert Moses musical.

  • Find out what the New York Times best sellers were the week you were born (or any week, really).

  • HEEB talks to Eve Annenberg, whose film “Romeo and Juliet in Yiddish” (discussed in the Forward here) will screen on January 16 at the New York Jewish Film Festival.

  • New research shows that Wilhelm von Bode (1845-1929), the namesake of the Bode Museum in Berlin, was — get this — an anti-Semite.

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