Film Pittsburgh Announces Lineup for 26th Annual JFilm Festival

Film Pittsburgh announces the full lineup for the 26th Annual JFilm Festival—11 days of international Jewish-themed films, guest speakers, and visiting filmmakers. This year, the Festival returns to SouthSide Works Cinema, with screenings from Thursday, March 7 – Sunday, March 17, 2019. The lineup features 21 narrative and documentary films from 11 countries, all of which are Pittsburgh premieres—including the world premiere of Back to Maracanã. Tickets go on sale on Tuesday, February 12. To purchase tickets and view schedule information, visit


The JFilm Festival opens with The Unorthodox, an underdog story that features humor, suspense, and great music. A band of misfits challenge the ruling political party in 1980s Israel. Despite the less-than-ethical methods they employ at times, it’s hard not to root for this gang in their effort to create a more just system. The screening will be followed by an after-party catered by Tallulah’s. Thursday, March 7, 7pm, SouthSide Works Cinema

Robert, a divorced 40-year-old, finds himself on an unexpected trip from Israel to Brazil for the World Cup with his father and son in Back to Maracanã. His Brazilian father, a passionate soccer fan, has brought them to cheer on his beloved home team, but Robert’s spoiled 12-year-old son hates soccer and would rather be anywhere else. The film will make its world premiere at the festival on March 9, followed by a Q&A with director Jorge Gurvich. Saturday, March 9, 5:15pm; Tuesday, March 12, 5:30pm, SouthSide Works Cinema 

In their documentary Chewdaism: A Taste of Jewish Montreal, comedy duo Eli Batalion & Jamie Elman, creators of the critically acclaimed web seriesYidLife Crisis, take a culinary journey through their beloved city in search of the best Jewish foods it has to offer. Their day-long tour celebrates the rich history of Jewish Montreal, with an array of guides sharing stories along the way. The screening will be followed by a bagel brunch catered by Smallman Street Deli. Sunday, March 10, 11am, SouthSide Works Cinema

Sponsored by the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh, Who Will Write Our History (NY Times Critic’s Pick) follows a clandestine group of journalists, scholars, and community leaders in the Warsaw Ghetto who vowed to defeat Nazi lies and propaganda not with guns or fists but with pen and paper. The film mixes the writings of the secret Oyneg Shabes archive with new interviews, rarely seen footage, and stunning dramatizations to transport us inside the lives of the courageous resistance fighters who risked everything so that their archive would survive the war, even if they did not. Sunday, March 10, 7:30pm, SouthSide Works Cinema 

There are over 9,000 Jews in Ethiopia who speak Hebrew, keep kosher, and have relatives in Israel—a country that continues to deny them citizenship. The Passengers documents their struggle through the eyes of two young men who travel to the United States to make an impassioned plea for assistance from American Jews. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Ryan S. Porush. Friday, March 15, 5:30pm, SouthSide Works Cinema

Screenings are held at SouthSide Works Cinema and other select locations around Pittsburgh, including the Hollywood Theater, the JCC – Levinson Hall, and Seton Hill University.

Two screenings will be followed by Film Schmooze, a casual post-film discussion led by local scholars, sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh’s Jewish Studies Program.

JFILM FESTIVAL FILMS (in alphabetical order):
93 Queen (USA)
Back to Maracanã (Israel)
Budapest Noir (Hungary)
Chewdaism: A Taste of Jewish Montreal (Canada)
Dear Fredy (Israel)
A Fortunate Man (Denmark)
Golda’s Balcony, The Film (USA)
It Must Schwing! The Blue Note Story (Germany)
The Other Story (Israel)
Paris Song (Kazakhstan/Latvia/USA)
The Passengers (USA)
Promise at Dawn (France)
Redemption (Israel)
Shoelaces (Israel)
Stockholm (Israel)
To Dust (USA)
The Tobacconist (Austria/Germany)
The Unorthodox (Israel)
Who Will Write Our History (USA)
Why the Jews? (Canada) preceded by Footsteps of My Father (USA/Belgium/Germany)


Tickets can be purchased online at or at the door if not sold out. Advance ticket purchase is strongly recommended.

Regular Screenings
$12 Adults
$9.50 Groups of 12+ (Advance only)
$8 Students (26 and under, full-time w/valid ID)
$6 Youth (18 and under)

Opening Night Film & Reception
$70 General admission until March 1 at 1pm
$85 General admission after March 1 at 1pm
$25 for full-time students (26 and under, full-time w/valid ID)

Chewdaism & Bagel Brunch
$18 Adults
$12 Students (26 and under, full-time w/valid ID)
$9 Youth (18 and under)

All Festival Passes (Does not include Opening Night)
$250 Reserved seating
$150 General admission

Six or More: 10% off total order if purchasing tickets to 6 or more screenings
To reserve accessibility accommodations, please contact us at 412-426-FILM (3456) or
Additional information about the films, post-film programs and speakers can be found at

CONTACT US (Please do not call the venues.)
Phone: 412-426-FILM (3456)

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