July 21, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Teaneck Cinemas to Show Hasidic Feminist Film ‘93QUEEN’

(Courtesy of Abramorama) Beginning on August 8 for a week long run, Teaneck Cinemas will show 93QUEEN, a film by Paula Eiselt. Set in the Hasidic enclave of Borough Park, Brooklyn, where EMS corps have long been the province of men, 93QUEEN follows a group of tenacious Hasidic women who are smashing the patriarchy in their community by creating the first all female volunteer ambulance corps in New York City. The film offers up a unique portrayal of a group of empowered women who are taking matters into their own hands to change their own community from within. The film follows Rachel “Ruchie” Freier, a no nonsense Hasidic lawyer and mother of six who is determined to shake up the “boys club” in her Hasidic community by creating Ezras Nashim, the first all-female ambulance corps in NYC. Though her neighborhood is home to the largest volunteer ambulance corps in the world, known as Hatzolah, that organization has steadfastly banned women from its ranks.

93QUEEN follows the formation and launch of Ezras Nashim through the organization’s first year. The spine of the film observes the highs and lows of creating an organization against incredible odds, as well as the women’s struggles to “have it all” as wives and mothers. In a society where most women don’t drive, and a few minutes can mean the difference between life and death, how do female EMTs transport themselves to the scene of an emergency?

In the midst of this already ground-breaking endeavor, Ruchie announces that she has decided to take her burgeoning feminism even further: She decides to enter the race for civil court judge in Brooklyn’s 5th Municipal Court District.

The creative process behind this fledgling organization is the skeleton of the film, but the heart of the story lies within the women themselves. Their struggles to determine their own roles in the organization and in their own community become front and center as 93QUEEN unfolds. How do the women buck the system while remaining part of it—especially when individual members have different ideas of what progress looks like?

Q&As with director Paula Eiselt will be announced on the film’s website at 93queen.com.

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