L’Chaim! – To Life!

A Film by Elkan Spiller

Synopsis

L’Chaim! is a glimpse into the unusual life of Chaim Lubelski. He had a wild past as a hippy in Germany, London and Paris, before he became a millionaire in New York and a professional chess player in St. Tropez. When his mother needs care, Chaim decides to move in with her into the elderly home in Antwerp. He cares for her around-the-clock with remarkable joy, lots of laughter and singing. Shaped by his mother’s history as a Holocaust survivor, Chaim feels his mission is to ease her pain. The film is an intimate story about altruistic love and deep humanity. Furthermore, the film demonstrates how the trauma of war still affects the everyday life of the next generation. Despite everything, Chaim rejects the role of victim. He chooses instead to accept his legacy with deep faith, love and humor.

Director

  • Picture of Elkan Spiller © Elkan Spiller

    Elkan Spiller

    Elkan Spiller was born in Cologne, Germany, as a child of Holocaust survivors. He graduated in film and communication from the Berlin University of the Arts with a thesis: “Anti-Semitism on German TV”. He has worked as a freelance journalist for German television and media in New York, Tel Aviv and San Francisco.For the production of his first feature documentary “L’Chaim! – To Life!” he moved back to Cologne and lives now also in Amsterdam. He started “L’Chaim!” with the short film »Mama, L’Chaim!« which has been shown at over 50 film festivals (including Berlinale and Rotterdam) and has received several awards.

Awards + Festivals

  • 32nd MUNICH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL & FESTIVAL OF FILM SCHOOLS (New German Cinema, Germany)July 1, 2014
  • JÜDISCHE FILMFESTIVAL BERLIN (Special Screening, Germany)October 5, 2014
  • JEWISH CULTURE DAYS IN MUNICH (Screening, Germany)October 13, 2014
  • 12th WARSAW JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL (Official Selection, Poland)November 3, 2014
  • 23rd ST. LOUIS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL (Official Selection, USA)November 14, 2014
  • 7th EXPOSED FILM FESTIVAL (Focus NRW, Cologne, Germany)November 24, 2014
  • ***AUDIENCE AWARD FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY***
    FILMZ – FESTIVAL DES DEUTSCHEN KINOS / FILMZ - FESTIVAL OF GERMAN CINEMA (Opening film in Documentary Competition, Mainz, Germany)November 25, 2014
  • 13th INTERNATIONAL FILMFESTIVAL LA GRANDE FILIALE (Competition, Speyer, Germany)December 27, 2014
  • KINO FILMPALETTE (Special Screening, Cologne, Germany)January 7, 2015
  • KINO AG GILDE SCREENING AT BERLINALE (65th Berlin International Film Festival, Germany)February 12, 2015
  • 1st JÜDISCHE FILMTAGE IN FÜRTH 2015 (Official Selection, Germany)February 20, 2015
  • RICHMOND INT’L FILM FESTIVAL 2015 (Documentary feature category, USA)February 26, 2015
  • 8th FILM FEST KOSOVA “THE GODDESS ON THE THRONE” (Official Selection, Kosovo)June 1, 2015
  • DOKKA – DOKUMENTARFESTIVAL KARLSRUHE (Competition, Germany)June 6, 2015
  • UNIVERISTY OF COLOGNE (Special Screening, Germany)June 18, 2015
  • *SPECIAL FESTIVAL MENTION*
    3rd INDIAN CINE FILM FESTIAVL -15 (Official Selection, Mumbai, India) September 19, 2015
  • 7th DOKUBAZAAR – INTERNATIONAL DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL (Official Selection, Slovenia)September 21, 2015
  • 10th MARBELLA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL (Official Selection, Spain)October 7, 2015
  • 19th JÜDISCHE WOCHE DRESDEN (Screening, Germany)October 26, 2015
  • 23rd THÜRINGER TAGE DER JÜDISCH-ISRAELISCHEN KULTUR (Screening, Erfurt, Germany)November 5, 2015
  • 12th HUMAN RIGHTS FILM FESTIVAL OF BARCELONA / NYC / PARIS (Official Selection, Spain)December 5, 2015
  • *SILVER AWARD IN FOREIGN FILM COMPETITION*
    CALIFORNIA FILM AWARDS (Official Selection, San Diego, CA, USA) December 30, 2015
  • 3rd NOIDA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2016 (Official Selection, India)February 7, 2016
  • *BOARD OF DIRECTOR’S AWARD WINNER*
    4th NORTH CAROLINA FILM AWARDS (Official Selection, USA) February 26, 2016
  • *GOLD REMI AWARD*
    49th ANNUAL WORLDFEST HOUSTON (Nominated for Remi Award (no Screening), Texas, USA) April 8, 2016
  • 11th MONACO CHARITY FILM FESTIVAL (Official Selection, Yacht Club of Monaco Theater, Monaco)May 7, 2016
  • 10th ETHNOCINECA – INT’L DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL VIENNA (Main program (no competition), Austria) May 17, 2016
  • *WINNER*
    1st NEAR NAZARETH FESTIVAL 2016 (Official Selection, Afula, Israel)May 18, 2016
  • RUSHDOC – INT'L DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL 2016 (Official Selection, Los Angeles, USA)November 18, 2016
  • SEAL OF APPROVAL: 'HIGHLY RECOMMENDED'
    FBW (GERMAN FILM RATING BOARD):

Synopsis

Crew

Director
Elkan Spiller
Screenplay
Elkan Spiller
Producer
Elkan Spiller
Director Of Photography
Virginie St. Martin (Koksjide/Antwerp) Antwerp: Ron Ramirez, Guillaume Vandenberghe, Raphael Kolacz, Simon Arazi, Elkan Spiller Jerusalem: Asaf Ben Ami Dead Sea: Yigal Elimelech St. Tropez: Gregoire Foucher
Editor
Günter Heinzel
Sound
Alex Davidson, Kevin Bolleteau, Robert Wiesner, ReBreak
Composer
Michael Benhayon

Details

Running Time
92:02
Shooting Format
HD
Sceening Format
DCP, BluRay, DVD, .mov, HDCam
Aspect Ratio
16:9
Sound
Stereo
Website

Contact

FILM FESTIVAL AGENCY

Markus Kaatsch
aug&ohr medien
Riemannstr. 21
10961 Berlin, Germany

+49 (0) 176 - 62965299

markus@augohr.de
www.augohr.de

WORLD SALES

JMT Films Distribution Michael Treves
9 Haavoda St Apt 33
Tel Aviv 6382110 - Israel

Tel: +972- 52- 36 333 98
Tel: +372 8136 8789 (Abroad)

michael@JMTFilms.com
www.JMTFilms.com

PRODUCTION COMPANY

Elkan Spiller Filmproduktion
Aachenerstr. 26
50674 Cologne
Germany

+49-172-939 5148
elkanspiller@gmail.com