West Coast Premiere
Directed by Michal Tkaczynski
Written by Michal Tkaczynski and Pawel Bramson. Edited by Jaroslaw Kaminski.
Poland, 2011. In Polish with English subtitles. 45mins.
This stunning documentary about a Polish soccer hooligan who converts to Orthodox Judaism will rattle and move you. Raised Catholic in a bleak Warsaw housing project, Pawel used to get his kicks beating up “Jews, Blacks, Roms . . . and the homeless” with other fans of the Legia soccer club. After his wife makes a shocking discovery regarding her husband’s ancestry, Pawel undergoes a gradual but radical metamorphosis. This movie traces Pawel’s stunning transformation and offers a poignant reminder that, at its essence, religion is about learning to live a moral and good life.
Preceded by Y-Love
Directed, photographed and edited by Caleb Heller
USA, 2011. In English. 50mins.
Y-Love is the “premier Orthodox Jewish entity in hip hop.” Raised in inner-city Baltimore, Yitz Jordan became fascinated with Judaism as a child, attended Yeshiva in his teens and endured a short-lived arranged marriage to a Yiddishspeaking woman who didn’t think he was religious enough. Music is the medium through which Y-Love connects to his faith; he seems most at ease spouting rhymes on a Jerusalem stage, surrounded by adoring, religious fans. This documentary paints a poignant portrait of a perennial outsider: a Black, Jewish, gay orphan searching for a home. Director Caleb Heller and subject Y-Love in person in San Francisco.