Spotlights

Explore the Festival through its biggest presentations, including 12 Big Night programs, the annual Take Action Day, Next Wave selections, a new sidebar on films that reflect the refugee experience and much more. More than just films, the programs in these sections are events you won't want to miss.

Big Nights

Big Nights

The Festival’s 12 Big Nights honor stories big and small that illuminate the diversity of Jewish experiences, champion freedom of expression, and delight with their wit and charm. This year’s Festival features two live, artistic performances, a new East Bay Opening Night and much more. Click through to learn more about each program.

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Live Performances

Live Performances

SFJFF37 is pleased to present several enhanced programs that bring music and dance to center stage for our Festival attendees. Ranging from traditional jazz standards to sublime modern dance, these performances provide the perfect compliment to the stories told onscreen.

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Exodus: A Sidebar on the Refugee Experience

Exodus: A Sidebar on the Refugee Experience

The immigration crises of the 21st century have contributed to a prodigious output of contemporary films, many of which will be showcased at SFJFF37. Inclusive of a Hollywood classic, the Exodus sidebar will examine the experiences of refugees that underscores similarities between past and contemporary currents of xenophobia, populism and extreme nationalism.

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Next Wave: Contemporary Stories

Next Wave: Contemporary Stories

Next Wave at SFJFF37 showcases fresh stories and perspectives exploring contemporary life through a Jewish lens from around the globe, from the runway of famed fashion designer Zac Posen in House of Z, to the streets of New York City with Zosia Mamet (GIRLS) in The Boy Downstairs or pre-war Europe with Natalie Portman and Lily Rose-Depp in the stylish Planetarium.

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Take Action Day

Take Action Day

The fourth annual SFJFF Take Action Day is dedicated to community action and social justice. On Monday, July 24 at the Castro Theatre, SFJFF37 presents the work of filmmakers who see their films as part of a larger mission to inspire personal and societal transformation. Afternoon discussions are moderated by Emmy-nominatedSan Francisco filmmaker Susan Stern.

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In Focus: Women's Directorial Debuts

In Focus: Women's Directorial Debuts

According to one recent study, women directors account for only 29% of all films selected at over 23 top U.S. film festivals. SFJFF37’s lineup proudly displays 41% of its selections as directed by women, with a significant number being directorial debuts (including our Opening and Closing Night films.) We honor these women in the director’s chair who are taking the film world by storm.

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50 Years: Six Days that Shaped Modern Israel

50 Years: Six Days that Shaped Modern Israel

SFJFF37 marks 50 years since the 1967 Six Day War with two important works that allow us to reflect on the past, imagine the future and contemplate the reverberations and implications of this paradigm-shifting conflict.

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