IN DARKNESS tells the true story of Leopold Socha who risks his own life to save a dozen people from certain death. Initially only interested in his own good, the thief and burglar hides Jewish refugees for 14 months in the sewers of the German-occupied town of Lvov (former Poland). Written by
Claustrophobic intensity that never lets the viewer go.
There have been a rash of holocaust films in recent years told from various view points and "In Darkness" is a worthy addition to the pantheon of films that re-tell the horror of the Jewish ghettos of Poland and their clearances. At a time when anti-semitic tendencies are once again beginning to emerge in various European countries it is sobering to be reminded of the consequences of the vicious hatred whipped up by the Nazis in the 30's and 40's.
While some might argue that the film is perhaps 20 minutes too long I was not aware of the time passing, being thoroughly engrossed in the attempts by a small group of Jews to survive long enough in the sewers to evade capture by either the Germans or the murderous Ukranian police force who did much to assist the Nazis in their elimination of the Jews in Poland. The scenes cut between the dankness of the sewers and the light of the streets above and whenever we are transported up from the dark and into the light, as an audience, we take gulps of fresh air.
I suspect there was some artistic licence employed but the story itself pins you to the seat and the collective sigh when the final message comes up on the screen at the very end is almost palpable.
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