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Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Hannukah on DVD and video

posted by Nell Minow

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When all the world is caught up in Christmas, it can help to have some DVDs on hand to explain that some people celebrate a different holiday at this time of year, especially when the stories and songs are told by familiar friends. Here are some of the best:
Lights: The Miracle Of Chanukah Judd Hirsch, Leonard Nimoy, and others tell the story of the Macabees in this 1987 animated story.
Lambchop’s Chanukah and Passover Surprise Sheri Lewis and her puppet Lambchop bring a sense of curiosity and wonder to the celebration, and a sense of fun, too as they sing while they make latkes.
A Rugrats Chanukah Unfortunately available only on VHS, this is a charming introduction that includes some historical context and prayers as well as the usual Rugrats silliness.
Chanuka & Passover at Bubbe’s A nice introduction to the history and traditions of the holiday.
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There’s No Such Thing as a Chanukah Bush, Sandy Goldstein This is a rare movie that frankly and sensitively portrays the pressure on kids to conform and how it feels to be left out of a celebration that seems to occupy the entire world in December. It gives families a way to acknowledge and even share the celebrations of others while feeling pride in their own traditions.
A Taste of Chanukah A delightful concert performance with Theodore Bikel.

  • Martha

    “Lambchop’s Channukah” is a family favorite at our house, and really helped us deal with issues about sharing holidays with people of other religions because of its wonderful exchange to the effect of “You celebrate other people’s birthdays, right?”

  • jestrfyl

    I am surprised no one has done a full blown Big Screen Special effects version of the Maccabee story. What a film it would make in the rights hands! It is the only place in the Bible where there are elephants, and someone is even crushed by one!! A Frank Miller kind of treatment is waiting. As evidenced by the stories in Maccabee 3 & 4 – this can get as gruesome and powerful as the film makers wants (the story of the mother of 7 sons would challenge the special effects guy and fuel the enthusiasm for Israel and the Messiah all at once!)
    Also, I am convinced it was the Maccabean uprising that gave form to the expectations of the Messiah that Jesus stepped into. It took place about 200 years before Jesus’ life and ministry, and would have been their equivalent of our Independence Day. I think Christians would understand the expectations of the “long expected Jesus” if they better understood this historical event and appreciated the hope that grew from it.
    Spielberg – step up! This movie is calling for your special touch! Daniel Day Lewis is Judas M! This could challenge even DeMill’s 10 Commandments!
    Shalom, ya’ll

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