The Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema (CFIC) is an annual October film festival with several outreach events throughout the year. Its mission is to share a love and appreciation of Israeli culture with the Jewish community and the community at large.
Israel’s most current, internationally award-winning feature films, documentaries, shorts and TV shows are shown during the festival, which runs from October 28 through November 8, with guest appearances by Israeli filmmakers, film scholars, film critics and other film experts. The CFIC is quickly evolving as a catalyst for multicultural dialogue as many of the same racial, ethnic, religious and social groups represented in Israel and in Israeli films also reside locally.
Opening night is not to be missed, featuring the U.S. Premiere of Elad Keidan’s 2015 Cannes Film Festival hit and the new winner of the top prize at the Haifa Film Festival, Afterthought, starring Itay Tiran (Lebanon), Uri Klauzner (Kippur) and Gur Bentwich (Off-White Lies) with the director, Mr. Keidan, in person — direct from Israel.
The screening, hosted by the American Society of the University of Haifa, will be preceded by an amazing Taste of Israel, a celebration of the diversity of Haifa, Israel’s third largest city. Participating (kosher) restaurants and caterers are Shallots Bistro, Milt’s BBQ for the Perplexed, Mizrahi Grill, Zelda’s Kosher Gourmet, North Shore Bakery and Mariano’s. Israeli wine and beer, plus soft drinks, teas and coffees will be served. A signature drink will be provided by Heaven Hill Distilleries. They will also posthumously honor and celebrate the lives of Festival founders Beverly Braverman z”l and Ophira Ben-Arieh z”l.
The mission of the Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema (CFIC) is to effectively nurture an appreciation of Israeli culture in the Chicago metropolitan area by multiple generations of American Jews, Israelis and the community at large. It is one of the few independent institutions in the Chicago community where there are no barriers to entry—by religion, politics, age, gender or ethnicity, so the Big Tent is filled with unprecedented opportunities for diverse individuals to interact. (In fact, the CFIC is quickly evolving as a catalyst for multicultural dialogue as many of the same racial, ethnic, religious and social groups represented in Israel and in Israeli films also reside locally.) Among its many supporters are leading local, national and international businesses, learning institutions, synagogues, service organizations and family foundations.
Currently in its 10th season, this is an annual fall film festival with several outreach events throughout the year. Screenings October 28 to November 8, 2015, will take place in Chicago at the famed Music Box Theatre and AMC River East, and in the northern suburb of Northbrook IL, at the AMC Northbrook Court. We will also hold two additional screenings at the Marcus Theatre in Chicago Heights on November 15.
While they pride themselves on opening the door to the innovation and dynamism of Israel to many, they are careful to neither idealize not demonize Israel in the film selections, but rather, to paint a deeply dimensional picture of the people, culture and contemporary artistry of the country so that viewers can establish—or maintain—a real, personal relationship with what they hear and see.