For the first time, movie enthusiasts in Northwest Tucson will get a sneak peek this Sunday at two entries in the Tucson International Jewish Film Festival two weeks before the annual event begins.
“We’ve been promising the people of the northwest that we would bring the festival to them, and now we’re so pleased that we’re able to expand the event to SaddleBrooke,” said Anne Lowe, outreach director and Northwest Division director for the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona. “It’s very exciting.”
On Jan. 9, the festival will present two showings of the two films: the feature-length “A Matter of Size” and 10-minute short “Second Guessing Grandma.” Both will be shown at 2:15 and 7 p.m. at the DesertView Performing Arts Center, 39900 S. Clubhouse Drive, in SaddleBrooke.
Filmed in Israel, the comedy “A Matter of Size” tells the story of overweight restaurant employees who are dealing with their girth and find acceptance while discovering sumo wrestling. The film has received critical acclaim, earning kudos from 89 percent of critics and 76 percent of viewers posting on the movie site www.rottentomatoes.com.
The film has a universal appeal, according to Joan Elder, the Northwest preview chair and SaddleBrooke resident. Another SaddleBrooke resident, Esta Goldstein, will introduce the films at the preview.
Tickets for either showing cost $5 and can be purchased at the door. The box office will open about 30 minutes prior to the start of each showing. Each audience member will receive a free ticket for prizes, which include passes to the 20th annual Tucson International Jewish Film Festival, which will take place Jan. 20-30.
During the 10-day event, viewers will be treated to unique documentaries and award-winning films from around the world, culminating with the Fabulous Faygeleh Film Series on the last day.
Once again the festival kicks off at the Loft Cinema with “Who Do You Love?”, a movie about Polish immigrant Leonard Chess who lived in Chicago during the 1940s. Chess becomes enamored with the new blues sound emanating from the city and after some setbacks, finds success with his recording business featuring iconic bluesman Muddy Waters. Chess Records went on to launch the careers of Waters, Bo Diddley, Etta James, Chick Berry and others.
One of the highlights of the festival is a special guest appearance by dance innovator Anna Halprin at the screening of the documentary about her, “Breath Made Visible.” Halprin, now 90, will hold a special dance workshop on Jan. 22. Space for the workshop is limited. For reservations, call 299-3000, ext. 243.
For tickets and a complete schedule of movies and events, visit www.TucsonJewishFilmFestival.org or call 615-5432.