- SFJFF 2022
- Year Round
- For Filmmakers
- About JFI
Opening Night Film
Bay Area Premiere
Pre-recorded Q&A with director Barry Levinson
In Belchatow, Poland on the eve of World War II, Harry Haft falls head over heels in love with local beauty Leah. When he is sent to Auschwitz, it is the promise of their reunification that allows him to endure the horrors of the camp and maintain a sense of humanity. In Auschwitz, the pugnacious Haft attacks a bullying Nazi and draws the attention of Officer Magnusson, who makes him a Faustian proposal—fight other inmates for the amusement of the bored brass, or die. As the film alternates between the war's years and his postwar life in America, Haft continues his fight in the ring. His intriguing story earns him a fight with renowned champion Rocky Marciano, all in the hopes that Leah is still out there somewhere, watching. Based on the book “Harry Haft” by Alan Scott Haft, with a superlative cast featuring Ben Foster, Billy Magnussen, Vicky Krieps, John Leguizamo, Peter Sarsgaard and Danny DeVito, Haft’s heartbreaking true story is told here for the first time in vivid detail by Academy Award-winning director Barry Levinson.
Barry Levinson is an award winning director, screenwriter and producer. His credits include 1988 Best Director Oscar-winner Rain Man, and Academy Award® nominated Bugsy (1991). Other iconic films include And Justice for All, Diner, The Natural, Good Morning Vietnam, and Sleepers. Homicide: Life on the Street, earned him an Emmy® and a Peabody Award. Levinson received the WGA’s 2010 Laurel Award for Screen, honoring a lifetime achievement in outstanding writing for motion pictures.