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Claude Lanzmann directed this 9 1/2 hour documentary of the Holocaust without using a single frame of archive footage. He interviews survivors, witnesses, and ex-Nazis (whom he had to film secretly since they only agreed to be interviewed by audio). His style of interviewing by asking for the most minute details is effective at adding up these details to give a horrifying portrait of the events of Nazi genocide. He also shows, or rather lets some of his subjects themselves show, that the anti-Semitism that caused 6 million Jews to die in the Holocaust is still alive in well in many people that still live in Germany, Poland, and elsewhere. Written by
Gene Volovich <firstname.lastname@example.org>
i have only watched the first disc and i wanted to cry and pull my hair and tear my clothing and wail out loud. i am not Jewish nor am i related to any survivors or victims. i have known many people with the tattoos, as i am the same age as most of them. they are all dead now. i am not, esp. in my heart.
first, i thought that it was visually beautiful. i had a visceral reaction when the director was insistent even to the point of bullying the cast. i worried that if they began to relive it all they would come undone and cry and wail for the rest of their lives, not be able to stop. on disc 1, though, the emotion ran high but no one lost control. perhaps something inside them is flat, just to survive.
i thought this was an excellent portion of a film. i think the idea of getting all the survivors on tape before it is too late was a great one. i think the topic should not be avoided since there is genocide going on periodically all over the world. are the people who know the history of the holocaust then to intervene so that history will not be repeated or will we stand by? one thing i sensed strongly from the little bit i saw was the position that the townspeople or people in general who were not targets were in. i always thought they should have 'done something' but now i see 'what could they have done? they would have been murdered. along with their families, with total impunity. it would seem that the Nazis controlled everything and everyone at that time and place. even those who were not direct targets were victims in a way and have had to live with what they saw and their own helpless guilt. Carole/wannadance
13 of 14 people found this review helpful.
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