Oy the Horror!

Halloween is here, a perfect time to spook ourselves with an immersion into the world of horror movies that tell uniquely Jewish stories. Israeli filmmakers have been among those most recently tackling the horror genre with such AJFF titles as the zombie flick JeruZalem, and a retelling of the classic folktale The Golem. A critically-acclaimed title from the Toronto International Film Festival, Demon, offers a modern-day take on the dybbuk legend while reflecting on Poland’s historical sins. From monsters and myths, to themes of religious or cultural identity, the collection of cinematic Jewish horror is surprising in its breadth and depth. And like the best horror movies, with psychological underpinnings rooted in our deepest fears and traumas. Joining our podcast conversation is B. Sonenreich, Editor-in-Chief of Oz Magazine (who has published and presented on the topic of the Shoah within horror cinema), and author Ed Simon who has written on Judaism and horror for publications like Tablet Magazine. Along with host Sara Glassberg, our special guests consider the theological and historical preoccupations of onscreen horror stories, and to what extent this genre is such an effective vehicle for exploring Jewish themes.

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Show Notes

Our guests for this episode: B. Sonenreich, Editor-in-Chief of Oz magazine, a leading publication for the Georgia film industry, and Ed Simon, author whose writings on Judaism and horror have graced such publications as TabletThe New York TimesMcSweeney's, and others.

Films and TV shows mentioned in the episode:

JeruZalem (2015) – Amazon | Blu-ray

The Golem (2019) – Amazon | Blu-ray

The Golem (1920) – Amazon | Blu-ray

Demon (2015) – Amazon

The Exorcist (1973) – Amazon | Blu-ray

Big Bad Wolves (2013) – Amazon | Blu-ray

The Shining (1980) – Amazon | Blu-ray

The Pianist (2002) – Amazon | Blu-ray

Schindler's List (1993) – Amazon | Blu-ray

Shoah (1985) – Blu-ray

The music for our episode is provided by the incomparable Joe Alterman. Specifically, our into and outro music is "Pure Imagination" off his album, "Give Me the Simple Life", and our interlude music is "Over the Rainbow" from "More Cornbread (Live)". Check him out on Spofity or wherever you get your music.

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