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Brazina Documentary Film Series

The Brazina Documentary Film Series brings you a curated (&/or juried) selection of award winning movies, free of charge. Each month, from November through April, MCA and WCA members have
the opportunity to enjoy acclaimed, limited distribution film. 

Click on a film title for additional information or to register. 

Registration opens one month prior to the screening date. 

    • November 01, 2022
    • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • Temple Shalom
    • 296
    Register

    Registration open October 8

    The Levys of Monticello

    Click HERE to view the trailer.





    When Thomas Jefferson died in 1826, he left behind a mountain of personal debt, which forced his heirs to sell his beloved Monticello home and all of its possessions. The Levys of Monticello is a documentary film that tells the little-known story of the Levy family, which owned and carefully preserved Monticello for nearly a century – far longer than Jefferson or his descendants. The remarkable story of the Levy family also intersects with the rise of antisemitism that runs throughout the course of American history.



    • December 06, 2022
    • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • Temple Shalom and NIJCC
    • 300
    Registration is closed

    Registration open November 2

    The Sturgeon Queens

    Click HERE to view the trailer.




    Four generations of a Jewish immigrant family create Russ and Daughters, a Lower East Side lox and herring emporium that survives and thrives. Produced to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the store, this documentary features an extensive interview with two of the original daughters for whom the store was named -- 100 and 92 years old at the time they were interviewed -- and interviews with prominent enthusiasts of the store including Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, New Yorker writer Calvin Trillin, actor Maggie Gyllenhaal,  and 60 Minutes correspondent Morley Safer.

    This film is directed by Julie Cohen. WCA & MCA members will likely remember her film RBG, which we presented a few seasons ago. She also co-directed the (recently streamed on NPR) film Julia, the story of legendary cookbook author and TV superstar Julia Child.


    • January 03, 2023
    • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • Temple Shalom
    • 300
    Registration is closed

    image.pngRegistration open December 7


    Joyce Carol Oates:
    A Body in the Service of Mind

    Click HERE to view the trailer


    Lauded as “America’s foremost woman of letters,” Joyce Carol Oates has penned over 100 novels across a variety of genres throughout her award winning career. In this illuminating documentary, Oates discusses the societal events that informed her writing. Raised nominally as Catholic, she discovered later in life that her grandmother was a Jew who fled Germany and kept her identity hidden. We follow her to Israel as she accepts the Jerusalem Prize, lamenting her lost cultural heritage and acknowledging that her respect for culture and art was inherited from her grandmother. Fans of  Oates will not want to miss this comprehensive examination of her life and art. Those not yet acquainted with her work will want to quickly correct that problem.

    • February 07, 2023
    • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • Temple Shalom
    • 300
    Registration is closed

    image.pngRegistration open January 4

    The Law 

    Click HERE to view the trailer. 



    Born in France in the 1920s, Simone Veil studied politics at Paris' prestigious Sciences Po until she and her family were deported to extermination camps during World War II. Though she lost her parents and a brother, Veil managed to survive both Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen, an experience that taught her to fight and which would prepare her for her battles for women's rights in the decades ahead. After the war, she rose in the national government, becoming Chirac's minister of health in 1974 and the driving force behind a then controversial law to legalize abortion in France in the 1970s.

     The Law is an impressive, well paced exploration of the continued need for survival and resilience in the shadows of anti-Semitism and sexism, that infected post-war French society.
    • March 07, 2023
    • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • JFGN Community Hall
    • 300
    Registration is closed

    image.png

    Registration open February 8

    The Adventures of
    Saul Bellow

    Click HERE to view the trailer. 


    The film traces Bellow's rise to eminence and examines his many identities: reluctant public intellectual, 'serial husband', father, Chicagoan, Jew and American. Interviews with the novelist's family and friends will shed new light on Bellow's personality and the way he turned life into art. He was also known for ant-social behavior.

    "The main accusations about Bellow are that he was a womanizer, narcissist, racist and misogynist. Those aren’t difficult claims to make about a man who married five times, is known to have had numerous affairs, and shifted his political convictions from Trotskyist to right-wing conservative over a long lifetime. His sons from three marriages, Adam, Daniel and Gregory, seem more than a bit chagrined to really dish the dirt about their famous father, but they do stick up for their mothers, who were clearly intelligent and attractive women but eventually broke up with Bellow as his life moved in different directions. " 

    Marc Glassman -- review in Joy Magazine


    • April 04, 2023
    • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • JFGN Community Hall
    • 300

    This  film title is being finalized

    Please check back later in the season.



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