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The Rabbi Goes West Image

The Rabbi Goes West

Impact | Insights

Multitalented VIFF alumni Gerald Peary and Amy Geller raise many timely and important questions about the rise of the right (and the overly confident) in this fascinating documentary about ballsy, fast-talking, 34-year-old rabbi Chaim Bruk, who moves from Brooklyn to Bozeman Montana to spread Orthodox Judaism. As he travels across "big sky" landscapes, he confronts both neo-Nazi threats and a more secular and liberal Jewish community that doesn’t quite know how to respond to his charisma and brand of religion.

The Rabbi Goes West exemplifies - with good humour and insight - the liberal and secular dilemma: how to be nice and inclusive while also being forthright regarding the difference between facts and opinions.

"What’s a non-religious, non-observant Jew doing making a movie… in which the main character is a Torah-following Hasidic Orthodox rabbi? There’s an evangelical strand of Hasidic Judaism - Chabad-Lubavitch - spreading across the world… Will Chaim succeed in his Chabad expansion, and at what cost?" - Gerald Peary


Community Partners
Vancouver Jewish Film Centre

Canadian premiere
Country of Origin: USA
Year: 2019
Running Time: 78 mins
Language:In English
Related Links: Official Website | Trailer
Producer: Amy Geller
Screenwriter: Gerald Peary
Cinematographer: David Reeder
Editor: David Reeder, Lucia Small
Music: Rob Jaret
Production Company: Big Sleep Films
Print Source: Amy Geller and Gerald Perry

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