AJFF Playback Narrative Week Five Results

The Atlanta Jewish Film Festival’s 20th anniversary season continues online with an interactive film contest. We invite you, our loyal audience, to cast a vote for your favorite films from our festival vault, and help determine which will claim the title of “2020 AJFF Playback Winner" in the categories of short, documentary, and narrative.

The Believer vs. The Syrian Bride


The Believer
Dir: Henry Bean • USA • 2001 • 100 mins • English

Henry Bean's provocative, award-winning drama revolves around a Nazi skinhead whose virulent anti-Semitism disguises the fact that he was born a Jew. Filled with frightening anger and hatred towards his people, Danny Balint (a raw, electrifying performance by Ryan Gosling) nonetheless, cannot shake the Talmudic influences of his youth. Inspired by the real-life story of a young Jewish man who became a neo-Nazi, The Believer puts a whole new prospective on anti-Semitism, racism, and self-hate. Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival. Featured at the 2003 AJFF.


The Syrian Bride
Dir: Eran Riklis • France, Germany, Israel • 2004 • 98 mins • Arabic, French, Hebrew, Russian, with subtitles

The tortured politics of the Middle East receive a particularly humanistic treatment in veteran Israeli filmmaker Eran Riklis' critically-acclaimed standout that skillfully balances family drama, gentle farce, and political commentary. Set against the flashpoint of the Syrian-Israeli conflict, Mona (Clare Khoury) leaves her Golan Heights village to cross the border for the saddest day of her life: an arranged marriage with a Syrian fiancée (Derar Sliman) she has never met, and never again allowed to reenter Israel to see her close-knit family. Embroiled in the personal and bureaucratic mayhem is the large wedding party and cast of other assorted characters, each portrayed with uncommon depth and sympathy, including the bride’s sister, Amal (beautifully played by actress Hiam Abbass). Featured at the 2006 AJFF.

See the Results on Who Gets to Advance to the Next Round