Our mission is to take you on a cinematic cultural journey that depicts a broad spectrum of Jewish life. The films shown at the Youngstown Area Jewish Film Festival come from all over the world, providing diverse audiences with a glimpse into the Jewish experience.

The Youngstown Area Jewish Film Festival is being co-presented by the Jewish Community Center and the YSU Center for Judaic and Holocaust Studies. Since its inception in 2003, the YAJFF has grown and flourished through this partnership, reaching a steadily growing and diverse audience. 

We are very excited to bring you seven outstanding films this festival season. Grab a friend and a bucket of popcorn and treat yourself to the richness of Jewish life projected through the lens of modern filmmakers.

See you at the movies!


Bagels Over Berlin
Run time: 94 min, Country: USA, Release Date: 2017
Thursday, July 27, 2017
Showtime: 7:00 P.M.
Jewish Community Center
Antisemitism and discrimination in the United States made life uncomfortable for Jews in the 1930's, and - in unison with Hitler's propaganda machine - placed a share of the blame for the coming war on the Jews. Anti-Jewish rhetoric from no less than Henry Ford and Charles Lindberg was everywhere, and discrimination was omnipresent - from limited educational and employment opportunities to house restrictions and social limitations. Nonetheless, Americans Jews responded to the outbreak of war with an overwhelming determination to fight for the country they loved. Through his interviews with over 30 Jewish war veterans, including Youngstown’s Irwin Stovroff, director Alan Feinberg reveals how Jews volunteered in large numbers for the U.S. Army Air Corps (later renamed the Air Force), the branch of service with the highest mortality rate in the first part of the war. Yet with any war veteran, each Jewish soldier or airman's story is different and thus personal.

'Bagels Over Berlin' Trailer from Alan Feinberg on Vimeo.

To Life! 
Runtime: 86 min, Country: Germany, Release Date: 2015
Sunday, August 20, 2017
Showtime: 7:00 P.M.
Encore Cinema Niles
An uplifting drama-romance bringing together two disparate wounded souls, To Life! tells of the growing bond between an aging, Polish-born cabaret singer who is a Holocaust Survivor, and a young German man driven by a secret.


The Pickle Recipe
Run time: 97 min, Country: USA, Release Date: 2016
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
Showtime: 7:00 P.M.
Encore Cinema Niles
In this crowd-pleasing family comedy co-starring comedian Jon Dore, Oscar-nominee David Paymer and Sex and the City actress Lynn Cohen, a cash-strapped party emcee and his conniving uncle scheme to steal a secret family recipe.

Run time: 97 min, Country: USA, Release Date: 2016
Sunday, August 27, 2017
Showtime: 4:00 P.M.
Movies 8 Boardman
Continuing her work chronicling the untold stories of Jewish heroes, Aviva Kempner (The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg) turns her lens on Julius Rosenwald – who may just be the greatest philanthropist you’ve never heard of. The son of an immigrant peddler, Rosenwald eclipsed his humble origins to become the top executive at Sears and Roebuck.
Driven equally by the Jewish ideal of tzedakah (charity), the writings of Booker T. Washington, and an increasing awareness of racial inequality in American society, Rosenwald dedicated his newfound wealth and prestige to joining with African-American communities in the South to build over 5,000 schools and establishing the Rosenwald Fund for the support of African American artists and intellectuals.

Rock in the Red Zone
Run time: 90 min, Country: USA, Release Date: 2015
Thursday, August 31, 2017
Showtime: 7:00 P.M.
Encore Cinema
Fear and danger are never far for residents of Sderot, where missiles rain down routinely from militant Islamic forces in the nearby Gaza Strip. Despite the daily trauma of air raid sirens and mortar explosions, war-weary Sderot has also managed to thrive as the epicenter of a music revolution.

Once in a Lifetime
Runtime: 105 min, Country: France, Release Date: 2014
Thursday, September 7, 2017
Showtime: 7:00 P.M.
Movies 8 Boardman
A dedicated history teacher at a French high school taps lessons of the Holocaust in an effort to motivate her troubled students in Once In A Lifetime, an uplifting schoolhouse drama based on a true story.
A potent and moving antidote to the devaluation of education in an age of ignorance, Once in a Lifetime demonstrates the enduring impact of the Holocaust in transforming future generations.

In Search of Israeli Cuisine
Sponsored by Jeffrey Chrystal Catering
Run time: 97 min, Country: USA, Release Date: 2015
Sunday, September 10, 2017
Showtime: 7:00 P.M.
5:00 P.M.: Authentic Israeli Dinner with Jeffrey Chrystal Catering, 
DeYor Performing Arts Center
In a gastronomical expedition, celebrity chef-restaurateur Michael Solomonov zigzags Israel to savor a food revolution rooted in centuries-old tradition.
Combining a procession of mouthwatering dishes and interviews with chefs, home cooks and farmers of all backgrounds, Oscar-nominated documentarian Roger Sherman presents a diverse portrait of the Israeli people told through the very personal language of food.

Students: $5.00
Pre-Order: $7.00
At the Door: $10.00
Season Pass: $40.00
Dinner prior to In Search of Israeli Cuisine (includes movie ticket): $27.00
Season Pass and Israeli Dinner (Sept. 10): $60.00

To inquire about the festival:
Sarah Wilschek, Youngstown Area Jewish Film Festival Program Manager

330.746.3250 Ext. 123

Hosting Organizations:  
Jewish Community Center of Youngstown

Youngstown Area Jewish Federation

Youngstown State University Center for Judaic and Holocaust Studies 

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