Year of Production: 2017
Yiddish, English (with English subtitles)
Directed by Joshua Z Weinstein
Directed by: Joshua Z Weinstein
Written By: Joshua Z. Weinstein, Alex Lipschultz, Musa yeed
Produced by: Adam Margules, Danelle Eliav, Chris Columbus, Eleanor Columbus
Associate Producers: Gal Greenspan, Roi Kurland, Nancy Medford, David Medford
Director of Photography: Yoni Brook, Joshua Z. Weinstein| Editor: Scott Cummings
Set within the New York Hasidic community in Borough Park, Brooklyn, Menashe follows a kind but hapless grocery store clerk trying to maintain custody of his son Rieven after his wife, Lea, passes away. Since they live in a tradition-bound culture that requires a mother present in every home, Rieven is supposed to be adopted by the boy’s strict, married uncle, but Menashe’s Rabbi decides to grant him one week to spend with Rieven prior to Lea’s memorial. Their time together creates an emotional moment of father/son bonding as well as offers Menashe a final chance to prove to his skeptical community that he can be a capable parent.
Shot in secret entirely within the Hasidic community depicted in the film, and one of the only movies to be performed in Yiddish in nearly 70 years, Menashe is a warm, life-affirming look at the universal bonds between father and son that also sheds unusual light on a notoriously private community. Based largely on the real life of its Hasidic star Menashe Lustig, the film is a strikingly authentic and deeply moving portrait of family, love, connection, and community.
Joshua Z Weinstein (b. 1983) is a New-York City based filmmaker. He was in fact born in Brooklyn, home to the Ultra-Orthodox Jewish community which had become the set of Menashe - his debut as a director of narrative fiction. Weinstein has previously been active as a director of photography for fiction and documentary films, in addition to his work on commercials. His extensive work had been shown at leading festivals and industry platforms.
Weinstein is an alumnus of Boston University College of Communication Film department, an alumnus of the CPB/PBS Producers Academy at WGBH, an IFP Filmmaker Labs fellow, and two time recipient of the NEA funded Southern Circuits Arts Tour.
Flying On One Engine (Documentary) - 2008
Drivers Wanted (Documentary) - 2012
Give Up Tomorrow - Director Michael Collins, 2011
Code Of the West - Director Rebecca Cohen, 2012
The Gambling Man - Director Aaron Gaudet, Gita Pullapilly, 2013
Elaine Strich Shoot: Me - Director Chiemi Karasawa, 2013
Mink Catcher - Director Samantha Buck, 2015
Being Mortal - Director Tom Jennings, 2015
Bikini Moon - Director Milcho Manchevski, 2017
Sundance Film Festival 2017
67th Berlin International Film Festival 2017 - Forum