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Kesher Movie: “There Are No Lions in Tel Aviv”

Wednesday, October 19, 2022 24 Tishrei 5783

6:30 PM - 9:00 PMZoom

Join us for an online viewing and engaging discussion of “There Are No Lions in Tel Aviv,” in which the chief rabbi of Copenhagen in 1935 dreams of building a zoo in Tel Aviv to teach children a love of animals.

In 1935, the chief rabbi of Copenhagen arrived in Palestine to be met with good-humored laughter—who ever thought of building a zoo in Palestine? Nonsense! After all, the landscape is just sand and dunes, and more sand! 

The story starts with an elderly man who remembers with fondness his childhood days visiting the Tel Aviv zoo. As the story progresses, he is replaced by others who continue the tale. Throughout the telling, caricatures of animals and people pop on and off the screen. "There Are No Lions in Tel Aviv" (2019) is more than the story of a rabbi who resigns from the rabbinate to build a zoo in Eretz Yisroel. It's the story of the people of Tel Aviv as they relate to their zoo: it's a story of their joys and their heartbreaks. And it's the story of Tel Aviv itself, from its beginnings to the amazing metropolis it is today. Learn about the rabbi's disgrace; learn about Johnny the zookeeper who loved the big cats. This story will spark your anger at evident injustices, it will make you laugh and it will make you cry. "There Are No Lions in Tel Aviv" explores our changing sensibilities about animal rights and about the very idea of zoos. Is their purpose to educate? to entertain? Why do modern cities need zoos at all? "There Are No Lions in Tel Aviv" is a historical movie couched in artistic humor. It is a timeless movie for viewers of all ages.

Written and directed by Daki Dror, starring Israel Godovich, Michael Melchior, and Max Shorenstein. Genre: Documentary. Run time: 1 hour 3 minutes. 

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