About the short: A young Jewish immigrant in San Francisco has a life-changing encounter with a neighbor that leads to a life full of music. The Violin Upstairs charts the true history of the filmmaker’s violin, from its birth in 18th-century Austria, to its existence in modern day San Francisco…

Still image from Zoe’s Dumpling Crisis

Click below to watch a special introduction from filmmaker Ellen Rodnianski, and scroll down to enjoy the film!

Click to watch Zoe’s Dumpling Crisis

View more online monthly shorts at https://jfi.org/watch-online/online-shorts!

Click above for filmmaker introduction
Click to watch the short film PETE CAN’T PLAY BASKETBALL

For more online monthly shorts visit https://jfi.org/watch-online/online-shorts!

I got my Jewish education not by sitting in shul, but in theaters during JFI programs. JFI has given me a greater appreciation of our traditions, history, art, humor… and shaped what it means to be Jewish…

— Audience Member

jfi’s impact 2018–2020: a sneak peak

JFI champions bold films and filmmakers that expand, evolve and…

From Former JFI Filmmaker in Resident, Yoav Potash

Click for a special filmmaker introduction and watch the film below!

This evocative short film combines a live musical performance by Saul Goodman’s Klezmer Band, filmed during the Covid-19 pandemic, with rare archival footage of prewar Jewish life in Europe. The film…

With special introduction from filmmaker Lyn Goldfarb

EDDY’S WORLD was initially shown at JFI in 2020 as part of the Jews in Shorts: Documentary series. Enjoy the film below with a special thanks to The New Yorker!

View more online monthly shorts at https://jfi.org/watch-online/online-shorts!

A Tinder-addicted bachelor takes relationship advice from his irascible German grandma and her toy boy boyfriend with hilarious results.

Click here for a special message from filmmaker Stephan Nielson
Click here to watch GRANNY KNOWS BEST!

View more online monthly shorts at https://jfi.org/watch-online/online-shorts!

Dear JFI Friends and Family,

In 1990 the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law prohibiting discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life. It ensured that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. JFI honors the 30th anniversary of this landmark…

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, artist Wendy MacNaughton and documentary filmmaker Sam Ball spent an afternoon silently people watching; exploring a beloved San Francisco parklet. In these times when interpersonal connection can feel difficult, their short film invites the viewer to appreciate the sense of community an outdoor public space can generate.

Watch this Q&A between subject and filmmaker, then enjoy the short film below!

Wendy MacNaughton Draws Castro Commons was originally produced for a multimedia installation at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco. The JCC asked MacNaughton and Ball to create work on the theme “We are not permanent, but we are not temporary,” reflecting the Jewish holiday of Sukkot’s emphasis on reflection about the impermanence of life, the search for home and the welcoming of strangers.

View more online monthly shorts at https://jfi.org/watch-online/online-shorts!


Dear JFI Friends and Family,

No country has been more synonymous with the eradication of Jewish life during World War II than Poland. With antisemitism on the rise following the emergence of far-right leadership here and abroad, it’s perhaps with little surprise that even in 2018, Poland had proposed a…

The Cinegogue

Inspiring communities to expand their understanding of Jewish life through film, media and dialogue. Presented by the Jewish Film Institute! www.jfi.org

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