Entertainment The Very Best Jewish Movies  

Ranker Film
718 votes 79 voters 1.6k views 61 items

List Rules Movies must have a primary focus on practicing Judaism—not just on Jewish characters. Includes documentaries.

When it comes to movies created by Jewish people, some of the greatest films ever made find their way onto the list. Hollywood has long been full of creative people from all nationalities, religious backgrounds, races, sexual preference, and anything else you can think of, but some of the most influential and creative people working behind the scenes have been Jewish. Determining what makes a movie "Jewish" requires looking into the people who worked on the film, but also the content.

You won't find every movie made by Mel Brooks or Woody Allen on this list seeing as Spaceballs and Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* But Were Afraid to Ask were made by Jewish people, but practicing Judaism or being Jewish was hardly the central theme of the film. Similarly, people like Steven Spielberg have a huge body of work, but only one of his films made the cut for this list and you can probably guess which one. Jewish films that make the cut for this list involve Jewish creators, but also content about Jewish people. Neil Simon's amazing body of work often involves his own life story, which is why movies like Biloxi Blues and Brighton Beach Memoirs can be found here. 

This list has everything from old Jewish movies like the 1947 Body and Soul to new films like 2017's Disobedience. Did your favorite Jewish film make the list? Add the best Jewish movies you think should have been included and rate your favorite to the top!

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19 2
The Ten Commandments is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Charlton Heston, Vincent Price, Yul Brynner
The Ten Commandments is a 1956 American religious epic film produced and directed by Cecil B. DeMille, shot in VistaVision, and released by Paramount Pictures. It dramatizes the biblical story ...more
2
29 5
Schindler's List is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley
Schindler's List is a 1993 American epic historical period drama, directed and co-produced by Steven Spielberg and scripted by Steven Zaillian. It is based on the novel Schindler's Ark by Thomas ...more
3
32 8
The Prince of Egypt is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Sandra Bullock, Michelle Pfeiffer, Val Kilmer
The Prince of Egypt is a 1998 American animated epic musical biblical film and the first traditionally animated film produced and released by DreamWorks Pictures. The film is an adaptation of ...more
4
24 4
An American Tail is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Christopher Plummer, Madeline Kahn, Dom DeLuise
An American Tail is a 1986 American animated musical adventure film directed by Don Bluth and produced by Sullivan Bluth Studios and Amblin Entertainment. The film tells the story of Fievel ...more
5
13 1
The Producers is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Gene Wilder, Kenneth Mars, Zero Mostel
The Producers is a 1968 American satirical dark comedy film written and directed by Mel Brooks. The film is set in the late 1960s and it tells the story of a theatrical producer and an ...more
6
23 4
Fiddler on the Roof is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Paul Michael Glaser, Chaim Topol, Molly Picon
Fiddler on the Roof is a 1971 American musical comedy-drama film produced and directed by Norman Jewison. It is an adaptation of the 1964 Broadway musical of the same name, with music composed ...more
7
7 0
The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kr... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Richard Dreyfuss, Randy Quaid, Denholm Elliott
The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz is a 1974 Canadian comedy-drama film directed by Ted Kotcheff and starring Richard Dreyfuss. It is based on the 1959 novel of the same name by Mordecai
8
7 0
Au revoir, les enfants is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Irène Jacob, François Berléand, Philippe Morier-Genoud
Au revoir les enfants is an autobiographical 1987 film written, produced and directed by Louis Malle. The screenplay was published by Gallimard in the same year. The film won the Golden Lion at ...more
9
11 1
Life Is Beautiful is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Roberto Benigni, Horst Buchholz, Richard Sammel
Life Is Beautiful is a 1997 Italian tragicomedy comedy-drama film directed by and starring Roberto Benigni. Benigni plays Guido Orefice, a Jewish Italian book shop owner, who must employ his ...more
10
17 5
Annie Hall is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Woody Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Christopher Walken
Annie Hall is a 1977 American romantic comedy directed by Woody Allen from a screenplay he co-wrote with Marshall Brickman. Produced by Allen's manager, Charles H. Joffe, the film stars Allen as ...more
11
13 2
Once Upon a Time in America is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Jennifer Connelly, Robert De Niro, James Woods
Once Upon a Time in America is a 1984 Italian epic drama film co-written and directed by Sergio Leone and starring Robert De Niro and James Woods. It chronicles the lives of Jewish ghetto youths ...more
12
6 0
Chariots of Fire is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Stephen Fry, Kenneth Branagh, Ian Holm
Chariots of Fire is a 1981 British historical drama film. It tells the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of ...more
13
6 0
Anne Frank Remembered is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
rocky 35 added Glenn Close, Kenneth Branagh, Joely Richardson
Anne Frank Remembered is a 1995 documentary film by Jon Blair about the life of the diarist Anne Frank. The documentary was made in association with Anne Frank House, Walt Disney Pictures and ...more
14
10 1
Brighton Beach Memoirs is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Brighton Beach Memoirs is a semi-autobiographical play by Neil Simon, the first chapter in what is known as his Eugene trilogy. It precedes Biloxi Blues and Broadway Bound.
15
12 3
Waltz with Bashir is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Yehezkel Lazarov, Mickey Leon
One night at a bar, an old friend tells director Ari about a recurring nightmare in which he is chased by 26 vicious dogs. Every night, the same number of beasts. As Ari delves deeper and deeper ...more
16
14 5
The Frisco Kid is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Harrison Ford, Gene Wilder, William Smith
The Frisco Kid is a 1979 movie directed by Robert Aldrich. The movie is a Western comedy featuring Gene Wilder as Avram Belinski, a Polish rabbi who is traveling to San Francisco, and Harrison ...more
17
9 1
Exodus is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Paul Newman, Eva Marie Saint, Lee J. Cobb
Exodus is a 1960 epic film made by Alpha and Carlyle Productions and distributed by United Artists. Produced and directed by Otto Preminger, the film was based on the 1958 novel Exodus, by Leon ...more
18
10 2
Fill the Void is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Yael Tal, Yiftach Klein, Razia Israeli
Fill the Void is a 2012 drama film written and directed by Rama Burshtein.
19
9 2
The Great Dictator is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Charlie Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Billy Gilbert
The Great Dictator is a 1940 American satirical political comedy-drama film starring, written, produced, scored, and directed by Charlie Chaplin, following the tradition of many of his other ...more
20
9 2
Ben-Hur is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Hugh Griffith
Ben-Hur is a 1959 American epic historical drama film, directed by William Wyler, produced by Sam Zimbalist for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and starring Charlton Heston, Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Hugh ...more
21
9 2
Cabaret is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Liza Minnelli, Michael York, Joel Grey
Cabaret is a 1972 musical film directed by Bob Fosse and starring Liza Minnelli, Michael York and Joel Grey. The film is set in Berlin during the Weimar Republic in 1931, under the ominous ...more
22
10 3
Dirty Dancing is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey, Jerry Orbach
Dirty Dancing is a 1987 American romantic drama film. Written by Eleanor Bergstein and directed by Emile Ardolino, the film stars Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey in the lead roles, as well as ...more
23
11 4
The Jazz Singer is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Myrna Loy, Al Jolson, William Demarest
The Jazz Singer is a 1927 American musical film. The first feature-length motion picture with synchronized dialogue sequences, its release heralded the commercial ascendance of the ...more
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14 7
The Pianist is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Adrien Brody, Thomas Kretschmann, Emilia Fox
The Pianist is a 2002 historical drama film co-produced and directed by Roman Polanski, scripted by Ronald Harwood, and starring Adrien Brody. It is based on the autobiographical book The ...more
25
14 7
A Serious Man is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Very Best Jewish Movies
Simon Helberg, Richard Kind, Adam Arkin
A Serious Man is a 2009 dark comedy written, produced, edited and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen. The film stars Michael Stuhlbarg as a Minnesota Jewish man whose life crumbles both ...more