16th Annual Pioneer Valley Jewish Film Festival, February 6 - March 22, 2021

Instructions for Accessing Films and Discussions

  • Each film has a certain availability date; most films have a streaming window of 72 hours.
  • When you register for a film program, you'll get an email confirmation that you’ve been successfully registered. Then, on the day of the viewing window start time, you'll receive an email with the film viewing link and specific access instructions.
  • For the safety and integrity of our film festival, filmmaker relationships, and partners, you must not forward film links to anyone.
  • If your film includes a companion Zoom conversation, you'll be automatically registered for the discussion, and will receive the Zoom access link in the same email as the film streaming link.
  • This is new and exciting territory for all of us, so we're sure you have some questions. Check out the FAQs and Tech Tips below.

 

Frequently Asked Questions 

How will I access the films from home?
If you have registered for a film program, you will receive an email from PVJFF with the unique link and access instructions on the day that the film is available to watch. You will need an email address and reliable Internet access to participate in this year’s streaming film festival.

Films can be streamed on any “smart” device: a desktop or laptop computer, tablet, smart TV, or even a smart mobile phone. There are many ways you can connect these devices to your home TV using an HDMI cable, through device-to-TV-screen mirroring, or through apps like Vimeo, which are easily downloadable on your smart devices. Some of our films will require creating a free Vimeo (streaming service) account. We will let you know in advance if this is the case.

When will the link for the films arrive?

NOTE: Read all emails from us! Check spam/junk mail regularly and mark us as a "safe sender."

On the day your film’s viewing window begins, the streaming link will arrive via email. If the film program includes a companion Zoom conversation, you will be automatically registered to participate.

Please DO NOT share or forward these links and emails with anyone. We have a set number of logins per film, are tracking users, and improper sharing could jeopardize our streaming licensing. Additionally, if you share a link, someone else who has already registered for the film will not be able to enjoy the movie. Thanks for your cooperation.

Can the films be viewed more than one time?
Your registration enables your household to watch the film once. Please plan for all members of the household to view the film together.

Films can be paused and re-started throughout the allotted viewing window; however, you must use the same device each time you access the screening link, and you must complete viewing by the end of the designated viewing window. There is no grace period. So, for example, if a film's viewing window ends at 12 noon Monday, you will be cut off at 12 noon Monday – please schedule your viewing time accordingly. The viewing window assumes Eastern Standard Time.

How do I access live discussions with guest speakers?
For those films that involve live discussion programs, all registered participants will be automatically signed up for the discussion and will receive the Zoom meeting link when the film streaming link is emailed. If you prefer to participate in the discussion via telephone rather than a video conference, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will provide that information. All festival programming requires pre-registration.  

Will the discussions be interactive? Will there be an opportunity for questions and answers?
Yes, there will be an opportunity to ask questions during the Zoom conversation. You can submit questions live via the Zoom “chat” feature or you can email us questions ahead of time at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For security and time, we may need to limit questions to some extent.

I understand the films are free. Can I make a donation to the film festival?
Yes! When you register for any PVJFF film program, you will have an opportunity to make an online donation, which supports PVJFF and the Springfield JCC during this critical time. Or, if you prefer, you can call the Springfield JCC at 413-739-4715 to make a credit card donation. You can also mail a check to PVJFF c/o Springfield JCC, 1160 Dickinson Street, Springfield, MA 01108. Your gifts help -- thank you!

 

Tech Tips

TO CREATE A FREE VIMEO ACCOUNT:
If you want to create a free Vimeo account, please click here. You will be asked to enter your email address and create an account password. For those with Smart TVs, you can also download the Vimeo app on your TV.

TO WATCH THE FILMS ON YOUR COMPUTER, TABLET, OR SMARTPHONE:
Click on the film streaming link that was provided in the PVJFF confirmation email. Follow any additional instructions regarding virtual login, such as the use of a password. We recommended that you copy and paste the password rather than trying to type it in. Passwords are case sensitive.

TO WATCH THE FILMS ON YOUR TV VIA HDMI CONNECTION (BEST OPTION):
You can use an HDMI cable to connect your computer to your TV. (HDMI cables are the same on both ends, so it doesn’t matter which end goes into which device’s HDMI input.) Once the devices are connected, select the correct input source on your TV. This will allow you to mirror the computer screen on your TV. You may need to adjust your computer’s sound settings for the audio to come through your TV.

Please note that many Mac laptops (and some other computers) don't have an HDMI port but instead have an all-purpose USB-C port. For these type of computers, an inexpensive "HDMI to USB-C" adapter cable -- available at computer stores and many online stores -- is necessary.

It is strongly recommended that you test this method before the film festival.

TO WATCH ON YOUR SMART TV (USING CHROMECAST, APPLE AIRPLAY, OR SCREENCAST):
Make sure your TV is on the same Wi-Fi service as your phone or tablet. Open the viewing link in your email.  On the bottom right of the link, select the Airplay or Chromecast icon.

WHAT IF STREAMING IS SLOW OR STUCK?
Internet bandwidth is often the culprit. Before viewing, we recommend you close all competing apps/browser pages/programs on your device, then launch a singular window/app for film viewing. Competing household users will slow WiFi down, too. Try a different browser (e.g., Chrome, Firefox, and Safari tend to worker better than Internet Explorer).

Do a speed test at www.speedtest.net. Bandwidth should be 5 Mbps, ideally 10 Mbps. Lower playback quality: many films automatically play in HD/Hi-Definition video. To adjust, click the gear icon in the lower right corner and choose a reduced option (note that video quality may lower as well). If problems persist, it's good to clear your browser cache, too.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I STILL HAVE TECHNICAL PROBLEMS AT HOME VIEWING THE MOVIES?
If you encounter a problem watching your PVJFF film(s) at home and have tried the suggestions above with no success, please email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please provide your name, email address, phone number, and a brief description of the problem. Our team will get back to you as soon as they are able. We recommend that you watch the films early in the viewing windows so that our team has time to troubleshoot any problems should they arise.

 

 

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