wjff
  • Director: Roberta Grossman
  • Year: 2015
  • Running Time: 90
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Country: USA, UK, Israel

Synopsis

ABOVE AND BEYOND, English. Wednesday, April 22nd, 3PM followed by a catered reception (sold out) & 6 PM without reception.

This film is a stirring account of the birth of the Israeli Air Force, in part through the efforts of Machal, an international group of volunteer pilots including American veteran pilots of World War II, who risked forfeiting their American citizenship to defend the young nation of Israel. Some of the American pilots – who smuggled planes out of the U.S., trained in Czechoslovakia, and flew with the Israeli Defense Force during the 1948 war for independence – are interviewed in the film, including the late Al Schwimmer, the Godfather of the IAF, Lou Lenart, one of its first heroes, and other volunteer pilots. The film also contains dramatic computer-generated re-creations of aircraft engaging in firefights with the Arab nations that attacked Israel in 1948, and other special effects.  The film has garnered many awards, including Best Documentary at the 15th Hong Kong Jewish Film Festival, as well as Best Documentary Audience Awards at the Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema, the Miami, Philadelphia and San Diego Jewish Film Festivals. The film will be introduced by producer Nancy Spielberg and will be followed by a question-and-answer session with Spielberg and a catered reception.