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Emory hosts Jewish film festival for Homecoming, Family Weekend

The Atlanta Jewish Film Festival On Campus kicks off Thursday at Emory with the musical comedy "Cupcakes," about a group of young Israelis in a Eurovision-type international singing contest.

A student-focused version of one of the largest Jewish film festivals in the world is coming to Emory.

The Atlanta Jewish Film Festival On Campus will offer six movies over three days, Oct. 19-21, to tie in with Homecoming and Family Weekend. Emory students selected the lineup from movies that the AJFF had previously screened at its larger festival each winter.

“It’s very exciting, in part because I always think it’s great to show high-quality films on campus,” says Matthew Bernstein, chair of the Department of Film and Media Studies, which is presenting the festival with Tam Institute for Jewish Studies and the AJFF.

“More than that, it’s really giving students a look at the work that goes into producing an arts event like a film festival, so they have the potential to put one on themselves,” Bernstein adds.

The films that will screen at Emory were chosen by students in Emory College's departments of Jewish studies and film and media studies, as well as graduate student Sara Grasberg, who is pursuing a master's degree in film and media studies.

The festival kicks off at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19, with “Cupcakes,” a musical comedy about a group of young Israelis in a Eurovision-type international singing contest. It, and all other films, will be screened in Room 208 of White Hall. A cupcake reception will follow.

The films are very youth-focused. Friday’s lineup includes “A Borrowed Identity (formerly Dancing Arabs),” the tale of an introverted Arab teen placed in a Jerusalem boarding school, at 2 p.m. and “Rock in the Red Zone,” a documentary about the music scene in a southern Israel town under repeated rocket attacks, at 4:45 p.m.

Saturday’s films include the 3 p.m. showing of the American autobiographical documentary “Little White Lie,” about a woman raised Jewish who discovers she is biracial (with filmmaker Lacey Schwartz in attendance); and the 5:20 p.m. screening of “Zero Motivation,” a black comedy exploring the lives of bored female soldiers posted to the desert by the Israeli Defense Force.

The festival closes Saturday night with a screening of “Already Tomorrow in Hong Kong,” which tells the story of the attraction between a Chinese-American woman in Hong Kong on business and an American living in the city. The movie starts at 8:10 p.m., followed by a question-and-answer session with actor Bryan Greenberg and an Asian food reception.

Tickets for all films are $10 general admission and $5 for students. For more information or tickets, visit Atlanta Jewish Film Festival on Campus.

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