Five Jewish Hungarians, now U.S. citizens, tell their stories: before March, 1944, when Nazis began to exterminate Hungarian Jews, months in concentration camps, and visiting childhood ...
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Using previously unreleased archival material in addition to contemporary interviews, this academy award-winning documentary tells the story of the Frank family and presents the first ... See full summary »
A chilling, heartbreaking testament to the strength and suffering of the Jewish people and the courage and heroism of those who came to their aid. With beautiful narration by Orson Welles ... See full summary »
This powerful and thought provoking film chronicles the compelling events in the Pacific Theater of WWII, from the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941 to the American occupation of Japan in ... See full summary »
A place: Theresienstadt. A unique place of propaganda which Adolf Eichmann called the "model ghetto", designed to mislead the world and Jewish people regarding its real nature, to be the ... See full summary »
In the winter of 1942-43, a Jewish family leaps from a train going through Silesia. They are separated in the woods, and Leon, a local peasant who's now a farmer of some wealth, discovers ... See full summary »
Co-Produced by the U.S.Holocaust Memorial Museum Research Institute, this Academy Award-winning documentary relates the harrowing story of Gerda Weissmann Klein and her journey of survival ... See full summary »
Gerda Weissmann Klein,
Five Jewish Hungarians, now U.S. citizens, tell their stories: before March, 1944, when Nazis began to exterminate Hungarian Jews, months in concentration camps, and visiting childhood homes more than 50 years later. An historian, a Sonderkommando, a doctor who experimented on Auschwitz prisoners, and US soldiers who were part of the liberation in April, 1945, also comment. Most telling are details: Renée packing her bathing suit, Irene swallowing the diamonds her mother gave her to buy bread, Alice's memorial for her sister Klara, Bill escaping police by jumping into a line of Jews going to Buchenwald, and Tom told by a US soldier to have "all the damn bananas and oranges you can eat." Written by
There is one thing that has troubled me and has troubled the world, that the Germans dedicated man-power and trains and trucks and energy toward the destruction of the Jews to the last day. Had they stopped 6 months before the end of the war and dedicated that energy towards strengthening themselves, they may have carried on the war in London, but it was more important to them to kill the Jew than in winning the war.
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I was fortunate enough to see this film at an advance screening hosted by the National Archive of Jewish Film at Brandeis University. This screening was full of professors and experts in the field of Holocaust study. Also present was one of the interviewees of the film.
This film effected me in ways that no other Holocaust documentary has. I have been learning about the Holocaust for many years, and I naïvely thought that I understood the magnitude of this disaster. What I realized during this movie was that no one can understand the experience of such a tragedy. Some of the most poignant moments were when the survivors walked through the camps with their children, recalling details along the way. Their children stood dutifully beside their parents the entire time, never understanding what their parents experienced.
The film bills itself as "the story of five remarkable people whose strength and will to live represent the extraordinary power of the human spirit." I don't feel that the movie followed this path, but took a different, much more intriguing journey. The audience left the theater understanding that the Holocaust is not something that can be summed up in a movie. Though the movie posed the question "why did it happen?" it never gives an answer. Instead, it shows that there is no way to reach a conclusion when one is faced with such a tragedy.
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