Last updated October 24th 2015

Reframing Reality is a film festival that challenges the viewer to move beyond the narrow confines of life as defined by convention, prejudice and fear; to present the full spectrum of life as it is lived, changing our perception of reality through art. The Reframing Reality film festival will take place at the Jerusalem Cinematheque from October 25 – 29, 2015. The festival presents feature films, documentaries, children’s films and shorts by and about people living with physical, emotional, mental and sensory challenges, as well as workshops and lectures. It’s a mind and heart-expanding experience – a festival unlike any other.

Touch of Light/Photo courtesy of PR

Touch of Light/Photo courtesy of PR

Opening the festival will be Jung-chi Chang’s feature film Touch of the Light, based on the experiences of Huang Yu-Siang. Huang, who was born vision-impaired, learned to play piano at an early age, after his mother noticed that he could repeat the notes on the piano after hearing them played by his cousin. Although it took time and effort, she found a piano teacher who was willing to teach Huang, playing the notes repeatedly for him to hear, and guiding his hand on the keys. The film focuses on the challenges Huang faced in attending the Department of Music at National Taiwan University of Arts. Huang plays the role of himself in this biography inspired film, and also composed the score.

Planet of Snail by Yi Seung-jun is a documentary that depicts the life and love of a couple with moving poetic beauty and simplicity. As they go about their daily lives, struggling with the challenges and obstacles presented by life (poet Young-Chan is deaf-blind and Soon-Ho has physical disabilities), and rising to meet the challenges they set for themselves, as people, as artists. Imbued with love, beauty and humor, the film raises issues of community, friendship, dependence, interdependence and independence. Winner of the Docaviv Best International Documentary Award, it is an exceptionally visually and emotionally sensitive film.

Nir Bergman’s Yona is feature film inspired by the life and work of the poet Yona Wollach. Bergman’s film reveals a deep understanding the artistic process and poetic coming into being, as well as conveying the intellectual milieu and atmosphere of the time. The poet’s life story contains much drama with no need for embellishment, Bergman’s film offers insight into Yona’s complex character from an empathetic perspective. Dr. Emmanuel Schen will give a talk preceding the screening on presenting mental illness in film.

I Smile Back directed by Adam Salky features comedian Sarah Silverman in her first dramatic role. The film is based on the eponymous novel by Amy Koppelman who co-wrote the screenplay with Paige Dylan about a wife and mother struggling with mental illness and addition.

Catch some comedy and feel-good vibes from La Famille Bélier, directed by Éric Lartigau. Teenage Paula pitches in on the family farm and also does double duty as interpreter to the hearing world for her parents and brother. The harmonious balance of her life shifts when she accidentally discovers a talent, and a love for singing.

The full program (in English) may be found on the Jerusalem Cinematheque website.

Tickets for the festival are offered at a very attractive discount: 30 NIS/20 NIS for persons with disabilities; 10 NIS children/soldiers/seniors; cinematheque members – free. Tickets for special events, as noted in the program are 40/30 NIS.

The festival is initiated and produced by Shekel, an NPO that provides community services to people with special needs, and the program was planned in cooperation with the US-based ReelAbilities film festival. The festival is also supported by the Jerusalem Foundation and the Israeli Organization for Community Communication.

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