Women in war zones in the frame

The seventh International Women’s Film Festival, Israel opens tomorrow in Rehovot, with a gala event at the Weizmann Institute of Science. The theme of this year’s festival is women living in war zones, and there are more than 50 female-made …

The seventh International Women’s Film Festival, Israel opens tomorrow in Rehovot, with a gala event at the Weizmann Institute of Science.

The theme of this year’s festival is women living in war zones, and there are more than 50 female-made films on the topic to choose from, nearly half by Israeli women.

The festival was co-founded in 2004 by Anat Shperling Cohen and Naama Prizant Orpaz, of the Women in the Picture Association.

“Our goals are to expose women filmmakers to the Israeli audience and to advance women filmmakers in Israel,” Cohen told ISRAEL21c, adding “In Israel, like in the rest of the world, less than five percent of directors are women, and we want to promote their work.”

Last year’s theme was the connection between women and money. This year, the collection of contemporary films mainly depicts Balkan or Israeli women living in the shadow of national conflict.

“We were looking for the most refreshing original new points of view,” said Cohen. “We don’t bring any films that will be released in Israel, so this is the only opportunity to view them.”

Following the festival, there will be limited screenings at cinemas in Herzliya, Holon, Jerusalem, and Sderot.