21 May 2009

Queens NY: 'Tree of Life' screening, May 23

Queens residents can see the acclaimed "The Tree of Life" by Hava Volterra, closer to home as it will be screened at 10 pm, Saturday, May 23, at the Utopia Jewish Center in Flushing.
Hava Volterra tries to come to terms with her father’s death by traveling to Italy to trace the roots of her family tree. With the help of her feisty 82 year-old aunt, she travels relentlessly from city to city, digging through ancient manuscripts and interviewing a wide range of quirky scholars.

Using Monty Python-style animation along with music from Golden Globe-nominated composer Carlo Siliotto, the documentary tells the story of Jewish mystics, money lenders, scientists and politicians.

Hilarious and emotionally gripping, the film is a fresh look at history.
The Jewish Week wrote:
"the project is clearly Volterra’s way of reconciling herself to her father's death. In an age of embarrassing and unedifying frankness about family matters, her reticence is refreshing. You can read all you need to know from what is there on the screen and for that alone, “The Tree of Life” is a refreshing and fascinating change of pace."
The Village Voice wrote:

"…. in the town of Volterra that gave her family its name, she digs up a pretty interesting family tree and a truly fascinating history of Italian-Jewish life from the 15th century through the Holocaust, enhanced by interviews with historians in Italy and Israel and some nifty animation and marionette puppetry

Tickets are $10. Contact the Utopia Jewish Center in Flushing for more information.

Thanks to Hadassah Lipsius, who provided this pointer.

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