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7th Annual Lindy CineMondays presents “SHTETLERS”
April 19, 2021 @ 7:00 pm – April 26, 2021 @ 7:00 pm EDT
Directed by Katya Ustinova
Sponsored by Debra Felman and David Warshal in honor of Deatra Cohen and Adam Siegel
Travel back in time to the lost world of shtetls – the once predominantly Jewish towns ubiquitous in the 19th century Pale of Settlement and former Soviet Union before the Holocaust. Only a few shtetls still exist today, all located in the regions of modern Ukraine and Moldova.
What is simultaneously fascinating and tragic about director Katya Ustinova’s nuanced exploration of the small, remote villages of the Soviet interior is the myriad ways traditional Jewish life has remained entrenched in the region’s cultural heritage. Historically, Jewish “shtetlers” had supported themselves by providing goods and services to their Jewish and non-Jewish neighbors. Nevertheless, it is still a surprise to see how the Jewish craftsmanship, Yiddish language and folklore, traditional Jewish cooking, and religious customs that once marked these thriving, tight-knit communities continue to be practiced and passed down generation after generation by those who remained.
This insightful and nostalgic documentary ponders this duality and many more by following nine vastly different shtetlers, now scattered across the globe, individuals whose memories and traditions serve as artifacts of the last vestiges of Jewish shtetl life.
- Calgary International Film Festival