For the June movie in its monthly AJFF Selects series, the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival is bringing Israel’s “Tel Aviv on Fire” to Sandy Springs.
“Tel Aviv on Fire,” a big-hearted satire where a soap opera writer finds himself caught in the crossfire of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, will be screened at the Sandy Springs Performing Arts Center June 19 at 7:40 p.m.
Awarded Best Israeli Film at the Haifa International Film Festival, the movie follows a charming 30-something Palestinian slacker, Salam (Kais Nashef), as he drives between Jerusalem and the West Bank for his lowly job as a production assistant on a cheesy soap opera, where his uncle is a top executive.
The TV show, whose action is set just before and during the Six-Day War, is stilted and melodramatic but has a devoted following in both Israel and the Territories. Stopped each day at a checkpoint to reach the television studio, Salam crosses paths with an authoritarian Israeli commander Assi (Yaniv Biton), who begins contributing his own ideas for the show.
Aspiring to make it as a screenwriter, Salam becomes entangled in an absurd series of quid pro quos, the action jumping slyly among fiction, fact and farce in skewering Middle East politics.
An extension of the festival, which takes place each February, AJFF Selects brings the same caliber of world-class films from that event to audiences year-round. This special film series features outstanding new international and independent films, enhanced with expert speakers and guest filmmakers.
Tickets to the June 19 screening are $15. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.ajff.org/programs/selects.