The AICE Israeli Film Festival is spreading its wings in 2012, taking the best of Israeli cinema across Australia to Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. Produced by Palace Cinemas and the Australia Israel Cultural Exchange, and taking place for the first time outside of Melbourne and Sydney, the ninth AICE Israeli Film Festival will screen more films over more days than even before, with an expanded program of some of the best Israeli films from the last twelve months.
Diverse, complex, inspirational, and turbulent, the films screening at the AICE Israeli Film Festival hold up a mirror to Israeli society, exploring the myriad of stories from one of the most diverse and multi-racial countries in the world. Artistic Director Katriel Schory said, “Israel has a wealth of stories to tell, some shaped by politics but others personal. This is a festival that overwhelmingly celebrates the stories of people’s lives. The burgeoning Israeli film industry is quite democratic, with a wealth of young filmmakers using new technologies to create films, ensuring that a multiplicity of voices is heard in the cinema.”
The exciting selection of films in this year’s program reflects the growing success of the Israeli film industry, which has developed a voice, a character and identity of its own. The 2012 AICE Israeli Film Festival features prize winners from prestigious festivals including Sundance, Berlin, Karlovy Vary, Jerusalem and San Sebastian, as well as winners from the 2011 Ophirs (Israeli ‘Oscars’).
Highlights of the festival include opening night film Restoration, a moving exploration of fatherhood and the generational divide; My Lovely Sister, a Jewish-Moroccan legend re-told in contemporary Israel; and Dusk, a debut feature about a car accident that brings together four protagonists and their stories.
The documentary program includes the multi award-winning Dolphin Boy, about a boy traumatised by a violent attack who participates in a rehabilitation program in the Red Sea; The Love Lost Diaries, about a woman reading the WW2 diary of her former lover 65 years after it was written; and When Israel Went Out, retracing the trek undertaking by thousands of Falasha Jews who walked from Ethiopia to Israel in the 1980s.
The Australia Israel Cultural Exchange (AICE) provides a cultural link between Australia and Israel, fostering greater knowledge and understanding between the two countries. AICE runs a corresponding festival of Australian films in Israel, recently screening films including Red Dog and Mrs Carey’s Concert in Jerusalem, Haifa and Tel Aviv, and which will open this year with Wish You Were Here.
The expanded AICE Israeli Film Festival provides more opportunities than ever before for Australian audiences to experience the rich diversity of Israeli film.