The 34th Israel Film Festival

Los Angeles 2020 Opening Night Film of "Asia" on Sunday December 13 Online

by Rachel Ganz

The 34th Israel Film festival, largest exhibit of Israeli Cinema in North America, opens in Los Angeles on December 13-27, 2020 online.

The Opening Night Film was "Asia", winner of nine Ophir Awards, including Best Film, Best Director for Ruthy Pribar, and Best Supporting Actress for Shira Hass who was nominated for an Emmy Award for her role in Netflix 's Unorthodox. "Asia" has been selected as Israel's official choice for the International Cate-gory at the Academy Awards 2021.

Meir Fenigstein, the Israel Film Festival Founder and executive director has been selected as winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award 2020. Actor Eliot Gold presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to Meir Feningstein

Meir Fenigstein's vision and commitment to bring Israeli Cinema to worldwide audiences was accom-plished by his dedication and creation of the Israel Film Festival in 1982.

The Israel Film Festival contributes to the intercultural awareness and acceptance among multifarious au-diences of all ages, races and religions. The United States has been exposed to Israel's social and cultural diverseness, with over 1000 features films and documentaries for the past 33 years

"Asia", the Opening Israel Film Premier is a very dramatic saga involving the estranged relationship be-tween a young attractive single mother Asia (Alena Yiv} and her defiant daughter Vika (Shira Haas).

Asia, who is a Russian immigrant is a dedicated nurse who works long hours at a Jerusalem hospital Asia is first portrayed as unemotional and cold towards her defiant 17 year old daughter Vika.

Asia's estrangement changes as her daughter Vika's degenerative disease rapidly deteriorates. It becomes obvious that Vika is not going to live very long soon into the start of this film.

The emotional transformation and love between the mother and daughter is heartbreaking and endearing. It made me cry to feel the tragic loss for both Asia and her daughter Vika.

The presentation of this films dramatic intimacy, and great acting performances make "Asia" a must-see film in 2020-2021.

There was an exciting Q&A after the film with the director Ruthy Pribar, actress Alena Yiv, and actress Shi-ra Hass.

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