Arts and Culture

Rescued twice: The archive that survived the Holocaust and the AMIA attack

Ester Szwarc, the academic coordinator of the AMIA building's Idishe Wiesenshaft Institute, or IWO, said the archive had split in two “like an apple" on July 18, 1994. (Courtesy of IWO)

(JTA) — Abraham Lichtenbaum was getting ready to leave his house on July 18, 1994 when, at 9:53 a.m., he heard an explosion: The headquarters of Argentina’s 200,000-strong Jewish community, the AMIA, located less than four miles from his home, had been bombed. Eighty-five people died and 300 were injured… Read more »

Emmys 2019: All the Jewish nominees

Natasha Lyonne at the Women in Film Annual Gala in Beverly Hills, Calif., June 12, 2019. She's nominated for best comedy actress for her role in "Russian Doll." (Emma McIntyre/FilmMagic,)

(JTA) — It’s Emmy season again and Jews in the TV industry have plenty of reason to celebrate. Out of all the nominees announced Tuesday, here’s a roundup of the Jewish picks on the list. Winners will be announced on Sept. 22 at Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater. “The Marvelous… Read more »

Mad magazine taught me to think like a furshlugginer Jewish intellectual

A cover of Mad Magazine, which will no longer publish new content, from 1968. (Elizabeth W. Kearley/Getty Images)

Mad magazine is on life support, and I can’t say I’m either surprised or all that sad about it. DC Entertainment announced last week that the satirical magazine will stop publishing new content. It was like hearing about a beloved old relative who passed away: I hadn’t had any… Read more »

Museum on Southern Jews moves its eclectic 4,000-item collection across state lines

Postcards in the Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience collection show Jewish-owned department stores throughout the South. (Courtesy of the Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience)

(JTA) — A prosthetic leg that belonged to a Russian Jewish immigrant to Lake Providence, Louisiana. An 8-foot neon sign from a hotel that advertised itself as the only establishment with an “up to date kosher kitchen” in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Two synagogue organs from the now-shuttered Temple B’nai… Read more »

Is there enough creativity in your life?

New research suggests Americans may be picking up paint brushes over remote controls. Two-thirds of adults in a recent survey say they seek to use their creativity more in life, and 77 percent would rather give up their Netflix subscription for a year than their favorite creative hobby. The… Read more »

Gal Gadot to star in $130 million Netflix film

(JTA) — Israeli actress Gal Gadot will star in the biggest feature film ever made by Netflix. “Red Notice,” also starring Ryan Reynolds and Duane Johnson, will have a production budget of about $130 million. The action thriller, set for release in late 2020, is centered around the pursuit of… Read more »

The new Netflix show ‘Family Business’ is a French-Jewish version of ‘Breaking Bad’

Jonathan Cohen, third from left, is seen with other members of the Netflix series "Family Business." (Netflix)

(JTA) — One fan’s recent description on Twitter of the new Netflix series “Family Business” isn’t too far off: a “French Breaking Bad but with weed.” The French series, which debuted last week, is a wacky comedy about a Parisian Jewish family, the Hazans, that turns its failed kosher… Read more »

UA seeks Middle East travel photographs

Visiting Israel or other parts of the Middle East this summer? The University of Arizona Center for Middle Eastern Studies is seeking photo submissions for its 29th annual exhibit, “Ordinary and Extraordinary.” Each year, the UA Center for Middle Eastern Studies organizes a photography exhibit featuring images from the… Read more »

James Caan’s latest character: A Jew who moves to Israel to become a pig farmer

In "Holy Lands," James Caan plays a secular American Jew who moves to Israel to escape the drama of his family -- and to raise pigs. (Cinedigm)

(JTA) — “Raising pigs in Israel? Couldn’t you play golf like everyone else?” That’s a quote that doubles well as the concept behind the movie “Holy Lands,” which stars Hollywood veteran James Caan as a relatively secular American Jew turned Israeli pig farmer. The film, directed by the French… Read more »

We need fewer stereotypical Jews on TV — and more Walter Sobchaks

John Goodman, right, plays Walter Sobchak in the Coen brothers' classic film "The Big Lebowski" opposite Jeff Bridges in the title role. (Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

(JTA) — The other day, my Catholic mother-in-law again implored me, her sole Jewish daughter-in-law, to watch “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” The third season of the award-winning show is expected to air in a few months, so I dutifully resigned myself to the task. But as I watched, I… Read more »

A former lawmaker hopes HBO’s ‘Chernobyl’ spurs change in Israel

A new HBO series portrays the Chernobyl nuclear disaster and aftermath. This image shows a building at the Chernobyl exclusion zone in the abandoned city of Pripyat, Ukraine. (Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

(JTA) — The HBO historical drama “Chernobyl,” which dramatizes the events surrounding the 1986 nuclear explosion in the now-Ukrainian city, has generated plenty of buzz around the world. In addition to garnering critical acclaim, the series has renewed conversation about the incident and even spiked tourism to the area of… Read more »

Tucson natives, plus Italian chef, make Frost gelato a hit

Frost co-founder Jeff Kaiserman, left, enjoys a sorbettini (dairy free milkshake made with sorbet and sparkling water); Chef Nazario Melchionda, center, indulges in marble black cherry gelato, and Stephen Ochoa has a cone with stracciatella and creama di biscotti gelato, May 29. Photo courtesy frost A Gelato Shoppe)

It was a sunny afternoon this May with temps in the ’90s, a preview of this month’s triple digit coming attractions. After lunch at a local café, I craved a dessert that was at once scrumptious and refreshing and wouldn’t break the calorie bank. Light bulb moment! I hurried… Read more »

When young Israelis move to Germany or Austria, it’s a hard pill for their families to swallow

Dan Peled, center, with his father, Gidi, and grandmother Lea. Peled is a main subject of "Back to the Fatherland," a documentary on Israelis moving back to Germany and Austria. (First Run Features)

(JTA) — On the surface, Gil Levanon and Kat Rohrer seem unlikely friends. Levanon is an Israeli, the granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor. Rohrer, an Austrian, is the granddaughter of an avowed Nazi officer. If their friendship seems a little odd, their collaboration on the documentary “Back to the… Read more »

Jewish comedian Jeff Ross defends Netflix roast of Anne Frank

NEW YORK (JTA) — Jewish comedian Jeff Ross defended an episode of a new Netflix series that mocked Anne Frank. Ross drew criticism last month for targeting the teen Holocaust diarist on “Historical Roasts,” where comedians make fun of historical figures. He defended the choice in an interview with the… Read more »