The Personals: Improvisations on Romance in the Golden Years

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Original title The Personals: Improvisations on Romance in the Golden Years
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1998
length 45 minutes
Director Keiko Ibi
production Keiko Ibi
music John Califra
camera Greg Pak
cut Milton Ginsberg
  • Gloria Bobrofsky, Abram Calderon,
    Deborah Ehrlich, Seth Glassman,
    Harold Gordon, Harold Krinsky,
    Ruth Krinsky, Moe Kronberg,
    Fred Schechter, Rose Straub,
    Shirley Tavel, Selma Wernick

The Personals: Improvisations on Romance in the Golden Years (reference Title The Personals ) is an American documentary - short film by Keiko Ibi from 1998, which at the 71st Academy Awards in 1999 with an Oscar was awarded.


The film deals with the work of Jewish seniors in New York who are members of a theater company on Manhattan's Lower East Side . Under the guidance of Seth Glassman, they have decided to perform a play based on their own experiences, both personal and fictional.

During the weeks of preparation, Keiko Ibi interacts between rehearsals and records interviews with those involved in their home. In doing so, some of them reveal their true feelings and do not ignore sensitive topics such as sex in old age, devotion and longing for affection. Their honesty, their humor, their contagious zeal but also the sad moments are discussed.

Production, publication

The film was produced by Keiko-Films and filmed in New York.

The Personals premiered on television in the US on April 25, 1999. In Japan it was presented on June 2, 2000 at the American Short Shorts Film Festival.


Entertainment industry journal Variety spoke of a cute snapshot of America's elders taking a sensitive look at the loneliness and life lessons of a group of energetic seniors. Ibis film about the sensuality of the elderly is non-fictional literature without frills and is characterized by simplicity. Personals will convince the audience that their parents and grandparents are not dispassionate relatives who only live for knitting and soft-boiled eggs. Honorable mentions went to 82-year-old Harold Gordon, whose charm could well rival that of a younger playboy, and Selma Wernick, a woman who was not embarrassed to admit that she needed someone to hold her. On the negative side, it was noted that there was too much going on within the short term, which caused a certain nervousness.

Awards (selection)

Academy Awards 1999 :

San Francisco International Film Festival 2000:

  • Silver Spire for Keiko Ibi in the category "Television - Society and Culture"

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. The 71st Academy Awards | 1999 sS (English)
  2. Michael Speier: The Personals: Improvisations on Romance in the Golden Years In: Variety , April 23, 1999 (English). Retrieved February 16, 2018.