The 3rd Annual Docaviv Negev Documentary Film Festival will take place this December in Yeruham, with additional events in Mitzpe Ramon, Hura, Dimona, and Arad. This year’s program contains an expanded selection of films, more filmmaker sessions and more stage performances.
This year’s festival will feature 25 documentary films, a performance and fan meetup with rapper Nechi Nech, an interactive VR station, plays, family activities, craft workshops and more.
The Docaviv Negev Festival focuses on the local communities of Yeruham and the surrounding area, and the festival program features content that deals with questions of identity, society, and community.
This year’s festival will open with a gala premiere of Mirror Project: A Portrait from Yeruham, four short films created in a local filmmaking workshop, guided by filmmakers Rubi Elmaleh and Meital Abuksis. Currently in its second year in Yeruham, it is a joint project of the Docaviv NPO and the New Fund for Cinema and TV.
Concluding the opening event will be a homage to director Haim Shiran, the veteran documentarian and TV director. The program will include selections from his films, interspersed with performances by singer Neta Elkayam, with live accompaniment from pianist Amit Hai Cohen and cellist Eyal Yahav.
• Raving Iran by Susanne Regina Meures – Sneak preview! Arash and Anoosh, a duo of DJs from Tehran, create electronic music despite constant worry about the morality police, violence and arrest.
• Three leading contenders for this year’s Academy Awards®. Life, Animated by Roger Ross Williams: 23-year-old Owen was diagnosed with autism as a child, and learned all he knows about the world from Disney animated films. Weiner by Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg: A highly publicized scandal leads to the resignation of Anthony Weiner, a Democratic congressman. This film documents his colorful political campaign as he decides to run for the mayorship of New York City, despite additional scandals that keep happening.
The Eagle Huntress by Otto Bell: Aishol-pan is a 13-year-old Mongolian girl who’s determined to change history by becoming the first female eagle hunter, a role passed from fathers to sons for untold generations.
• From Russia with Love by Shiri Shahar: This international story of adoption is told from the point of view of the adoptive parents, and raises questions about adoption and about parenting in general.
• Babylon Dreamers by Roman Shumunov: Film screening followed by a performance by Ashdodi breakdance troupe Unstoppabullz, the subject of this multiple award-winning documentary. The performance will also feature local Yeruham breakdancers Matan Avisror and Tomer Nagavker.
• Dior and I: Fashion Event. Beit Ha’am will host a screening of the film Dior and I by Frédéric Tcheng about the legendary fashion label, and a one-of-a-kind local fashion fair, where you’ll be able to purchase locally-produced clothing, jewelry, scarves and accessories, as well as fashion items from the wardrobes of Yeruham’s best-dressed women.
• Who’s Gonna Love Me Now? By Tomer and Barak Heimann: 18 years after leaving Israel, this film’s protagonist tries to find his way home. Winner of the audience award at the Berlinale Film Festival.
• Forever Pure by Maya Zinshtein: A season in the life of the Beitar Jerusalem soccer club, during which it recruits two Muslim players from Chechnya. Their arrival ignites the most racist campaign in the history of Israeli soccer, which led to the team’s disintegration, on and off the pitch.
• Dimona Twist by Michal Aviad: About seven women who emigrated to Israel in the 1950s. Fresh off the boat, they were taken to the desert. Among the dust, alienation and squalor, they took part in the creation of a new town: Dimona. A peek into their poignant lives and the insight they gained over the years, with humor, sadness, and disillusionment.
• The Settlers by Shimon Dotan:
A far-reaching, comprehensive look at the Jewish settlement enterprise in the West Bank. It examines the origins of the settlement movement and the religious and ideological visions that propelled it, while providing an intimate look at the people at the center of the greatest geopolitical challenge now facing Israel and the international community.
• Shalom Italia by Tamar Tal: Three brothers travel to Tuscany in search of a cave where they used to hide as kids, 70 years ago, during the War. A road movie filled with humor, fine Italian food and Tuscan views, on the fine line between history and tall tales, both of which really happened.
• Town on a Wire: 10 minutes from thriving Tel Aviv lies the city of Lod, across the tracks from Israel’s center, afflicted with desperation, crime, and racism. But can the city be saved? Can its Arab and Jewish communities regain hope? The film will be screened in Hura.
• A Screening for students of Ron Cahlili’s new TV series. Is the Mizrahi tribe plotting to seize government from the hands of the Ashkenazis? This episode follows Ophir Toubul, the founder of a new Mizrahi political movement, on his journey to meet today’s Mizrahi Israelis.
• Dancing for You: A screening followed by a dance performance for kids, Two Worlds, a dance encounter between a deaf man and a hearing woman, who manage to communicate in an electrifying, surprising way. This performance involves the audience in the onstage dialog and movement.
• Nechi Nech – Performance and fan meetup. The celebrated rapper and 2015 breakthrough of the year is still full of surprises. Nechi Nech presents the kickass, sensitive, authentic, uncompromising music that made him a star.
• Docaviv VR: Three interactive virtual reality projects. Home is an interactive experience that takes the participant on a mysterious night stroll in the outskirts of an Israeli moshav. “…is typing” is a VR experience based on the participant’s personal text message history. VR Yeruham is a virtual tour of local points of interest. Come and see Yeruham in 360°!
• Upcycling Workshop for Kids: Come and design your own “Good night lamp”. This workshop casts kids as storytellers who can design “story lamps” that tell the same personal story every time you turn them on.
• Tusovka – Immigrant Poetry: A spoken-word poetry and music event, featuring the personal stories of four “first-and-a-half generation” artists from the former Soviet Union, who describe their emigration experiences and the Soviet culture where they grew up.
• Be’er Sheba Playback Theater: Audience members’ personal stories are put on stage in an exciting and moving improvised performance.