Film festival coming to Synagogue

MANCHESTER - Everyone will be humming the memorable theme song from "Chariots of Fire" after its screening on Sunday, Dec. 16 at 4 p.m. at Israel Congregation of Manchester (ICM). Revisit this historical drama that tells the compelling story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of God, and Harold Abrahams, an English Jew who runs despite British snobbism and prejudice.

"Chariots of Fire" (1981) was nominated for seven Academy Awards, winning four, including Best Picture and Best Original Score. Among its many achievements, this moving film won the Golden Globe's Best Foreign Film award, the London Film Critics Circle's award for Film of the Year, and the People's Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival. It is ranked 19th in the British Film Institute's list of Top 100 British films. While there is general agreement that this fact-based story has been significantly fictionalized, at times presenting distorted facts, there is no agreement on its key messages. Is "Chariots of Fire" a story that "soars beyond sports to embrace some of the deepest and most powerful drives in all human beings" or does "its promotion of essentially Victorian values and its resolute focus on the past" make it "a reactionary film"?

You can share your opinion as we discuss this cinematic classic. Plan on attending the first film in ICM's acclaimed Jewish Film Festival, an annual event that always appeals to wide audiences. Admission is open to the general public by free-will donation. ICM is located at 6025 Main Street, Route 7A in Manchester Center. For more information, contact Doris Bass at 802-297-0167.


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