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ON THE MAP combines pulse-pounding, nail-biting sports action with a Cold War chill in this fast-moving documentary that captures the spirit of an Israeli nation triumphant against all odds that will rivet sports and non-sports buffs alike. In 1977, while Israel was still reeling from years of war and terrorism, the underdog Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball team had a sensational season that inspired the beleaguered nation, drew the active interest of leader Moshe Dayan, and culminated in a dramatic, high-stakes match against four-time defending European champions, CSKA Moscow (aka “the Red Army”). The tense game captivated every Israeli. Maccabi’s shocking, emotional victory forever altered Israel’s self-image and psychology, and Israel-American team hero, Tal Brody’s statement resonated with Jews the world over: “Israel is on the map—not just in sport, but in everything.” Told through the eyes of six reunited American basketball players who played for Maccabi and exciting archival game footage, ON THE MAP also features interviews with basketball icon Bill Walton, former NBA Commissioner David Stern, former Israeli ambassador to the United States Michael Oren, and former refusenik Natan Sharansky.


Menkin headshot

Dani Menkin’s films include documentaries 39 POUNDS OF LOVE (SJFF 2006 Audience Choice Award Winner for Best Doc) and DOLPHIN BOY (SJFF 2012) and the delightful narrative feature IS THAT YOU? His current projects include a documentary about wildlife photographer Amos Nachoum and a biopic about basketball star Aulcie Perry (who plays a prominent role in ON THE MAP).

On the Map poster

Film Details:

Director: Dani Menkin
Country: USA
Language: English
Running Time: 85m
Year: 2016
Genre: Documentary
Official Website


  • Family-Friendly 
  • Sports
  • Politics
  • Cold War
  • USSR
  • Israel

Rating/Warning: G

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