Commissar was created by Aleksandr Askoldov in 1967, but was banned by Soviet censors for 20 years, due to the film’s sympathetic depiction of Jews. Commissar is a heartbreaking story of a Jewish family in a backwater Ukrainian shtetl ravaged by war and pogroms.
A Letter to Mother (1939) is one of the last Yiddish films made in Poland before the Nazi invasion. The plot centers around the story of a mother’s persistent efforts to support her family, while her husband moves to America.
La Grande Illusion (The Grand Illusion) is a 1937 French war film directed by Jean Renoir. The story concerns class relationships among a small group of French officers who are prisoners of war during WWI and plotting an escape.
This 1940 Warner Brothers film directed by William Keighley is based upon the actual exploits of New York City’s 69th infantry Regiment during WWI.
The Phoenix Chamber Ensemble performing Stravinsky’s Suite de L’histoire du soldat for violin clarinet and piano, Prokofiev’s Sonata in D Major for violin and piano and Ravel’s Piano Trio.
Join us for an evening of performance exploring the Jewish experience during World War I. An esteemed cast of actors will bring to the stage the words of soldiers and civilians, politicians and poets, from home and abroad. Through memoir, music and imagery, these dramatic readings will reflect upon the war that created the modern world.
This film series commemorates the start of the Great War, a time when violence once again disrupted peaceful life around the world. Four classic international films reflect a range of Jewish experiences in the East and the West.
An international roster of scholars will discuss the state of scholarship and introduce cutting-edge research on Jews in World War I, examining the war’s importance as a cataclysmic event in Jewish and world history.