Har Sinai Hebrew Congregation will host a screening of the film “Boris Dorfman – a Mentsh,” on Sunday, October 16, at 9:30 a.m. at the Temple, in Pennington. Filmmakers Uwe and Gabriela von Seltman, the film’s directors andwriters, will attend and follow with a Q&A session. The film owns three international awards and has screened at film festivals throughout the world.
“Boris Dorfman – a Mentsh,” was shot entirely in the Yiddish language. It will be screened at Har Sinai with English subtitles. The von Seltmans will be part of a question- and answer-session after the screening.
The movie is set in the former multinational city of Lviv, Ukraine, a center of Jewish life for 600 years. Boris Dorfman, subject of the film, takes cameras on a tour of Lviv 75 years after the beginning of World War II, and shows all the places of horror and hope that reflect the city’s Jewish history. Dorfman only survived World War II because he was sent to Siberia by Soviet Union leader Joseph Stalin before the Nazi invasion. He came back to Lviv to find himself as the only person speaking the near-extinct language of Yiddish.
Dorfman is a 90-year-old activist who remembers the past but lives in the present, and tries to prepare people for the future. He is referred to as a “mentsh,” a version of the Yiddish word “mensch,” which means “a person of integrity and honor.” Dorfman, despite his life’s experiences, is considered a mensch because he is full of love and empathy.
“Boris Dorfman – a Mentsh,” is the first part of a planned Yiddish trilogy by the von Seltmans. The remaining two films will focus on Tel Aviv, and New York.
The movie has been part of film festivals in in Ukraine, Germany, Poland, Israel, Australia, Canada, the U.K. and the U.S.
Among the film’s awards and designations:
-The Lodz Jews Heritage Foundation, XXIV Media Festival, Lodz, Poland, Film A ward.
-The “Yiddish Oskar” by Sholem-Alechem-Foundation, Lviv (Ukraine), for “outstanding contribution to the revival of the Yiddish culture.”
-A certification mark “Wertvoll” (“Valuable”) by Deutsche Film- und Medienbewertung (the German federal authority for evaluating and rating film) for outstanding quality.
Admission to the film is free and no reservations are required. Refreshments will be served. For more information contact the Har Sinai office, (609) 730-8100, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.