Now, you can host a Jewish film festival right in your living room.
The Film Movement, the company that popularized the DVD-of-the-Month Club, just launched the first-ever Jewish Film Club. For an annual subscription cost of $108, viewers can receive an award-winning Jewish-themed feature film on DVD, as well as a bonus short film, every other month. Subscribers can also stream the videos online for no extra charge.
“There’s incredible demand for Jewish films; more than 500,000 people attend Jewish film festivals each year,” says Adley Gartenstein, president of the Film Movement. “The Jewish community has been hungry for quality Jewish culture, whether it’s movies, theater or music. It’s the new religion. A lot of Jews find it easier to embrace their Judaism through culture rather than a synagogue.”
The Jewish Film Club (www.jewishfilmclub.com) is the first niche DVD-of-the-month club that the company has launched since it was started a decade ago. The Film Movement trolls the Cannes, Sundance, Berlin, Tribeca and other film festival for “film festival gems” that it then distributes to subscribers before or while the films are still in theaters.
Israel’s submission to the Oscars, “The Human Resources Manager,” is the first film of the new series. The film tells the story of an HR manager of Jerusalem’s largest bakery who has separated from his wife, is distanced from his daughter and is stuck in a job he hates. When a foreign employee is murdered in a suicide bombing, the HR manager is sent to pay his respects to the victim’s family in Romania, a mission that helps him “rediscover his humanity,” according to the blurb on the Jewish Film Club’s website. A list of upcoming releases can be viewed on the website.
JDate is a sponsor of the Jewish Film Club and a portion of proceeds from each membership will support Chai Lifeline, a nonprofit that aims to bring joy to children with serious illnesses and their families.
“I love watching a movie, and saying, ‘ah yes, that is part of the Jewish experience,’” Gartenstein says. “It really has to be moving. We’re not just looking for a Jewish piece, I’m looking for a humanity piece.”