On the Shelf
The video department is an archive preserving formats that are not film: DVD, VHS, BETA UMATIC, MINI-DV DVCAM. The collection holds thousands of titles and is open to the public by pre-coordination.
The video archive also serves the different Cinematheque departments - by editing film clips for lectures, finding films for the monthly program, and more - and to the general public. Also, for a symbolic fee, one can watch the films in the collection.
All films listed in this catalogue are available for sale for home video purposes only. Public screening or television broadcast rights are not offered with the purchase of the VHS tape.
Life of the Jews in Palestine (1913)
Dir: Noah Sokolovsky
Contemporary Restoration: Eric le Roy and Ya'akov Gross (1998)
Restored by the Film Archive of the CNC, Bois d'Arcy, France, in cooperation with the Israel Film Archive-Jerusalem Cinematheque
A rare look at the pioneers of the First and Second Aliyah, including footage of the the agricultural communities, as well as Jewish urban life in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Hebron, Tiberias and Haifa. The film disappeared without a trace after WWI, but was discovered in 1997 in the Film Archive of the Centre National de la Cinematographie in Bois D'Arcy, France, and is now presented in its newly restored and preserved version. (60 min., Hebrew voice-over OR international version: 78 min., music track, Fr., Eng. & Heb. inter-titles).
Dreamers and Builders (Israel, 1997)
Dir: Ya'akov Gross
Music: Yochanan Cinnamon
Restoration and Adaptation: Israel Film Archive - Jerusalem Cinematheque in cooperation with the National Center for Jewish Film, Brandeis University
The early builders of the Zionist vision, pioneers of the Third and Fourth Aliyah of the 1920's, are captured on film by Ya'akov Ben Dov, who was a pioneer in silent filmmaking in Palestine between 1917 and 1933. A compilation documentary made up of three of his films which were considered lost, but were recently rediscovered in archives around the world and were technically restored. (60 min., Hebrew or English).
On the Road to Statehood (Israel, 1997)
Dir: Ya'akov Gross
Restoration and adaptation: Israel Film Archive - Jerusalem Cinematheque
A look at Palestine in the 1930's and 40's, based on the Carmel Newsreel collection (1935-1958) by Nathan Axelrod. A compilation film which portrays the Jewish sector in Palestine, the rapid building - physical, artistic and cultural - in which it was engaged and the existential struggles which occupied it during those years. The film includes elements of daily life in the city and town, examples of building of settlements overnight, cultural events and political leaders. In addition, it provides a new-old perspective on Arab-Jewish relations. (60 min, Heb., Eng. subt.)
Moledet (Israel, 2001)
Sc. & Dir.: Ya'akov Gross
Prod: Israel Film Archive - Jerusalem Cinematheque
"Moledet" - the first film laboratory in Tel Aviv - was established in 1927 at the initiative of two pioneers of silent film and talkies in Israel: producer and translator Yerushalayim Segal, and cinematographer Nathan Axelrod. Throughout its seven years of activity, the studio produced dozens of newsreels, entertaining advertisement films and Zionist documentaries. Moledet combines selected episodes from the history of Tel Aviv, the first Hebrew city, and its inhabitants, settlement life and agricultural work in the Hepher Vally, in Natanya and elsewhere. Also shown here are the dedication of the Iraqi oil pipeline at Haifa, sports events including the first Maccabiah in Tel Aviv, the first Purim celebrations, relations between Jews and Arabs in Palestine, advertisements, cultural and artisticb presentations, and much more.
Avodah (Israel, 1935)
Dir. & Ph.: Helmer Lerski
Music: Paul Dessau
A monumental and poetic documentary film which dwells on the agricultural and technological achievements of the early pioneers in pre-state Israel. Helmer Lerski is an artistic cinematographer who understood how to utilize the natural light of the land of Israel in order to achieve maximal effect. The dramatic music track adds an additional strength to the film which helps to make it the most important cinematic achievement of Israel of the 1930's. (48 min., music only).
Description of a Struggle (Israel/France, 1961)
Dir: Chris Marker
Prod: Wim van Leer
An impressionistic journey by internationally renowned documentary filmmaker, Chris Marker. Marker searches for answers to questions about Israel's struggle - not so much a struggle for existence, but rather a struggle concerning the meaning of that existence, both spiritual and cultural. Winner of the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, 1961. (58 min., Heb., Eng. & Fr. subt.).
They Were Ten (Israel, 1960)
Dir.: Baruch Dienar
With: Leo Filler, Yisrael Rubinshik, Ninette Dinar, Oded Teomi, Bomba Tzur
A sensitive story of heroism and bravery, set during the period of the BILU in the 1880's. A group of pioneers form a cooperative settlement. They are then confronted with countless obstacles, from the harsh conditions of nature, to the resentment of neighboring Arabs, to the whims of the Turkish authorities, to internal struggle within the settlement. A milestone in early Israeli filmmaking. (105 min., Hebrew, English subt.)
Haim Gouri Trilogy
The Israel Film Archive has taken upon itself to restore the Haim Gouri and the Ghetto Fighters' Museum's Trilogy - The 81st Blow, Flames in the Ashes, and The Last Sea (produced between 1974-1985). This seminal documentary production is a compilation of varied archival materials, including original footage shot by Nazi film crews, documenting in great detail the Nazi death machine. The sound overlaying the archival images is comprised of the voices of hundreds of Holocaust survivors, speaking in their own languages and telling their personal stories, some for the first time in a public forum.
These films are considered some of the most important documentary works created in Israel about the Holocaust, although they have so far received limited exposure among Israeli and world audiences. Their preservation and distribution in digital format will allow them to be brought to the awareness of a public that is hardly aware of their existence.