The Maine Jewish Film Festival announces its 2021 virtual festival, to be held Saturday, Nov. 6, through Sunday, Nov. 14. Now in it’s 24th year, the festival will feature 17 feature and documentary films and related programs.

2021 Maine Jewish Festival films will include many genres, including drama, documentaries, and even a mockumentary:

  • Persian Lessons — Inspired by a short story, Persian Lessons explores the power of coincidence and human creativity when under extreme pressure by telling the story of a WWII prisoner who is forced to teach a language he does not know;
  • Challah Rising in the Desert — A revelatory mosaic of faith and cultural pride amidst a unique landscape, this movie celebrates the history and people of New Mexico’s Jewish community;
  • Double Income, Kids – This film offers an intimate look at surrogacy and gay parenthood, as a couple pursue their dreams and become parents of twins;
  • La Estella Roja – This provocative, haunting and even hilarious mockumentary is simultaneously a retelling of the story of Esther and a commentary on history and current events;
  • Asia – Starring well know actress Shira Haas and the winner of numerous awards, this film focuses on the relationship between a free-spirited mother and her differently abled daughter;
  • A Crime on the Bayou – tells a story of great injustice and great courage by exploring the life of a falsely accused Black teenager and his battle for the truth.

The Maine Jewish Film Festival will present numerous conversations with filmmakers and other commentators. This year’s guests will include Nancy Buirski, the director of “A Crime on the Bayou”; Gabriel Lichtman, the director of “Las Estella Roja”; and Lena Vurma, the producer of “Adventures of a Mathematician.” MJFF will also provide some festival offerings free of charge to promote wide participation of a diverse audience.

The festival’s vision is that great films unite us in increasing communication and understanding. MJFF films offer fresh perspectives on history, science, the arts, and community. They have the potential to stimulate meaningful discussions on themes that matter, particularly as we deal with change and uncertainty. “MJFF’s mission has never been more relevant, and we are thrilled that we are able to be able to present our programs in a format that meets our audience’s needs. We are excited about our 2021 offerings, which span the globe and provide insights into a wide variety of human situations.” Barbara Merson, Executive Director

The Maine Jewish Film Festival is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide a forum for the presentation of films to enrich, educate and entertain a diverse audience about the global Jewish experience. Since 1998, the Maine Jewish Film Festival has screened over 400 films and brought more than 150 guest artists from across the U.S. and around the world to Maine.

Tickets are on sale at A complete festival schedule including film descriptions, featured guest speakers, panelists, and special events can be found online at

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