Donate to Four Winters: A Story of Jewish Partisan Resistance and Bravery in WW2

Donations are tax deductible. Gifts over $250 will receive a letter for tax purposes.


Send your contribution by check made out to "The National Center for Jewish Film".
Include "Jewish Partisans" in the memo line.

Send to:
The National Center for Jewish Film
Brandeis University, Lown 102 MS053
Waltham, MA 02454


Call 781-736-8600 Monday through Friday from 9am-5pm EST with your Visa or Mastercard.


When filling out your credit card information, please click "opt in" to share your mailing address with us. We will provide the filmmaker with notice of your gift.

About the Film

A Film by Julia Mintz

Presented by NEW MOON Films

THE DOCUMENTARY FOUR WINTERS features first-person interviews with the very last living Jewish partisans, contributing a timely and critical chapter of Jewish resistance during the Holocaust. The filmmakers have harnessed this disappearing record from those who actually lived this history  and together explored its significance and meaning in the context of the present – regarding issues of genocide, supremacy, discrimination and war.  Today, as a third post-WWII generation of young Jews grapples with its own understanding of Jewish identity, community, and belonging, the experience of the Shoah continues to be a defining piece of our collective identity. Through the documentarians’ lens, young people can now witness the partisans’ resistance, determination and bravery against Nazi brutality and hate. These raw and honest reflections embody the depth and power of telling one’s story for a final turn – in hopes that next generation will never forget. As Faye Shulman said at the close of her interview in her home in Toronto, Canada, her hands clasped over those of the film’s director, …Now my story is yours.”

“Your project will, I am certain, contribute to more reasoned, informed discussion of this emotionally-charged subject. It can have worldwide resonance.”
David Engel, PhD, Professor of Holocaust Studies, New York University

TO THE HAUNTING QUESTION Why didn’t Jews fight back?” THIS FILM WILL ANSWER: “They did.” While dramatizations like Defiance and Inglourious Basterds have come out of Hollywood, there is a true story that urgently needs to be told.  FOUR WINTERS tells it, revealing through a new lens, an alternative portal to explore and understand the Holocaust. This new documentary film tells the story of those courageous Jewish fighters who despite unimaginable odds, fought back fiercely against Hitler’s war machine as it raged across Eastern Europe. 

“The Jewish partisans waged guerrilla warfare against the Nazis, but much more importantly, they defied the extermination of their people, their culture, and their religion, fighting to preserve the memory of their past and the possibility of their future.”
Elie Wiesel, Nobel Prize Winner, Professor, Author, Chairman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council

THE FILM Deep within the forests of World War II Poland, Lithuania, Belarus and the Ukraine, more than 25,000 Jews fought back against the Nazis and their collaborators. Many of the partisans had witnessed the brutal murders of their families, friends and communities before escaping into the forests. Often based from mere holes in the ground and armed with whatever weapons they could build, trade or steal, these Jewish men and women – many barely teens – organized and fought back against the better-trained and better-equipped armed forces of Adolph Hitler’s Third Reich. The partisans carried out deadly acts of sabotage, staging ambushes and executing tactical missions including blowing up bridges, police stations, telegraph lines and trains headed to the frontlines. They carried out dangerous assignments, whenever possible carrying two grenades, one for their target and one for themselves in case of capture. Records show that by 1944, partisan vigilance had made the forests so dangerous that Nazi soldiers and their collaborators were afraid to enter.

“Our history must not contain only tragedy. We cannot allow that. Our history must also have heroic actions, struggles, self-defense, war; even death with honor”
Chaya Palevsky, Jewish partisan, Film Advisor

About the Filmmakers

Julia Mintz, Writer | Director | Producer

Julia is a writer, producer and director whose work focuses on narratives of bravery and resistance against unimaginable odds. She has been on the producing team for films that have been shortlisted for the Academy Awards, have premiered at Cannes, Sundance and TriBeCa, and won Emmy, Peabody and festival awards. Her films seen on HBO, PBS, American Masters, Netflix and Amazon. Mintz has worked on many of the country’s most celebrated documentary films, including Mr. SOUL!, which premiered at TriBeCa, short-listed for an Academy Award®. She co-produced Joe Papp in Five Acts, premiered at TriBeCa, and post-produced Get Me Roger Stone, premiered at TriBeCa. Mintz produced Emmy-nominated California State of Mind; and post-produced Soundtrack for a Revolution, short-listed for an Academy Award® Best Documentary, premiered at Cannes, nominated for Writers Guild; Nanking, short-listed for Academy Award® which won Peabody®, Emmy®, and Editorial Award at Sundance; and Love Free or Die, winner Sundance Jurors Choice. Additional projects include Muscle Shoals, Sundance; Equity, premiered Sundance; Bing Crosby RediscoveredLife and Times of Frida Kahlo, Emmy® nominee; and Cyndi Lauper: Still So Unusual. Julia has also produced programming for Discovery, NASA, National Geographic, NHK and SONY. 

Dan Sturman, Producer

Dan wrote and directed the Academy Award nominated Soundtrack For a Revolution, and Sundance Award-winning documentary film Nanking, and produced the Academy Award®-winning documentary Twin Towers. Between 2001 and 2003, Sturman produced three seasons of the NBC documentary series Crime and Punishment. He has reported and produced for ABC News, CBS News, and the BBC while based in Los Angeles; for Reuters and NBC News while based in London; and for ABC News 20/20 in New York. In 1992, Sturman was the associate producer of another Academy Award®-winning documentary, A Time For Justice. The film, produced by Charles Guggenheim, commemorates the lives of the men, women, and children who were killed during the American Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 60s. Sturman is currently in production on a feature length documentary about child actors. Sturman graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University.

Peter Heady, Editor

Peter has worked with many of the industry’s greatest documentary film directors including: Erroll Morris Academy Award®-winning, Fog of War; Sundance Film Festival Award winner Capturing The Friedmansby Andrew Jarecki; Academy Award® nominated Tupac Resurrection by Lauren Lazin; John Sales’ Casa De Los Babies; Spike Lee’s Jim Brown All American; Dan Sturman’s Academy-nominated Soundtrack for A Revolution; Godfrey Reggio’s NaqoyqatsiPieces Of April by Peter Hedges; and Ken Burns’ documentary films including the multi-part series: National ParksThe WarBaseballThe West and Lewis and Clark. Peter is a graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology. A twenty-year professional with experience in all aspects of film and post-production, Peter has worked extensively as both a colorist and editor, lending a unique perspective to his finishing work. Peter is also a frequent speaker on topics of interest to the larger filmmaking community at film festivals, technical conferences around the country.

Tricia Reidy, Story Editor

Tricia has worked as a documentary editor for twenty years. She collaborated on twelve programs with Ken Burns including episodes of Civil WarJazzThe WarProhibition, and Frank Lloyd Wright. She has received an American Cinema Editors nomination for The Civil War, an Emmy® Award nomination for best editing for Frank Lloyd Wright, for which she also received a Peabody Award, and has been screened at The Sundance Festival and the Cannes Film Festival. She edited Judith Helfand’s A Healthy Baby Girl, broadcast on PBS. The film was a Sundance Film Festival selection and winner of a Peabody Award.

Allen Moore: Cinematographer

A graduate of Harvard University, Allen has been producing, directing, photographing and editing his own documentaries for more than 30 years. His independent films include: The Shepherds of Berneray, Food On Hand, Black Water, A Sheepherder’s Homecoming,The Pursuit of Truth: 200 Years at Middlebury College, and Albert Alcalay: Self Portraits. Among the honors awarded to Allen are several state artist fellowships and a Guggenheim Fellowship in Filmmaking. Allen has also served as a director of photography for several of Ken Burns's films, including The Civil War, The Congress, Thomas Jefferson, Lewis and Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery, Mark Twain and Horatio’s Drive: America’s First Road Trip. For his work on Baseball, Allen received a Primetime Emmy® Award nomination for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Cinematography. In addition to his work on Ken Burns's' films, Allen has been a Director of Photography on a number of other award-winning documentaries. He received a second Primetime Emmy® Award nomination for his cinematography work on Ric Burns’ American Experience series on New York. Other film credits include: Wild by Law, The Donner Party, The Way West, Divided Highways, The Harriman Expedition, and Monkey Trial, winner of the George Foster Peabody Award.


“Little comprehensive work has been done on the Jewish partisans…your film can illustrate the many acts of spiritual and armed resistance and the circumstances by which they were physically & morally possible... We as a nation are currently engaged in war, and witness to wars that threaten to devolve into genocide. We must take the time to look to the past and find the keys to greater understanding and peace.”
Omer Bartov, DPhil, Author, Author of In God’s Name: Genocide and Religion in the Twentieth Century and The “Jew” in Cinema: From The Golem to Don’t Touch My Holocaust; John P. Birkelund Distinguished Professor of European History, Brown University

“The complex problems raised by the conflicts between the pro-Soviet and nationalist resistance movements...remains one of the few topics related to the Holocaust which still needs both serious academic discussion and popularization... At the same time, the heroism of such individuals and their contribution to the ultimate allied victory cannot be denied. I very much look forward to working with you on this complex and painful topic and producing a film that will do justice to all those involved.”
Antony Polonsky, MA, DPhil, FRHistS, Author, Professor of Holocaust Studies, Brandeis University, Invitational Scholar, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

“This...issue has taken on greater importance because young people today must learn to distinguish between resistance fighters and terrorists. There is an absolute moral distinction between them... I only chose to get involved with one or two outside projects, but I am most enthusiastic about this one because it is truly important.”
Michael Berenbaum, PhD, Author, President, The Berenbaum Group; Author of The World Must Know: The History of the Holocaust Chief Historical Consultant—The Last Days, Academy Award Winner Professor of Jewish Studies, The American Jewish University Former Director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

>“As the Founder and Director of Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation, I have spent my career on the preservation and exposition of this story... This film is timely and critical to our understanding of the Holocaust and humanity...[and] will secure that this story has a permanent place in human history.
Mitch Braff, Founder and Executive Director, Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation

“The activities of Jewish partisans in eastern Europe during World War II and their relations with other ethnically-based partisan groups have become a subject of intense interest and, in many cases, controversy in the countries of the former Soviet Bloc. They have long been the subject of mythology among citizens of those countries as well as among Jewish people throughout the world. Your project will, I am certain, contribute to more reasoned, informed discussion… It can have worldwide resonance.”
David Engel, PhD, AuthorAuthor of The Holocaust: The Third Reich and the Jews and In the Shadow of Auschwitz: The Polish Government-in-Exile and the Jews, 1939-1942 Greenberg Professor of Holocaust Studies, New York University

"At a time when Holocaust stories have been embellished and falsified, it is important than an honest account be developed in a format that is accessible to a general audience. My experience as Associate Curator of the award-winning exhibition, Daring to Resist: Jewish Defiance in the Holocaust...has convinced me that it is a topic of enduring interest. It captures the imagination and engages the minds and hearts of thoughtful people. It raises universal questions of ethics and challenges standards of moral behavior."
Brana GurewitschArchivist/Curator, Museum of Jewish Heritage Author of Daring to Resist: Jewish Defiance in the Holocaust (companion volume to the exhibition) and Mothers, Sisters, Resisters: Oral Histories of Women Who Survived the Holocaust

As a fiscal sponsor, The National Center for Jewish Film serves as a non-profit tax-exempt umbrella organization that accepts and administers contributions made to select film projects. Fiscal sponsorship allows filmmakers to solicit and receive tax deductible donations from individuals and gifts from foundations without having to create a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation.


Fiscal Sponsorship Main Page

Back to Top





Join our mailing list!