8.4/10
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Shoah (1985)

Not Rated | | Documentary, History, War | November 1985 (USA)
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2:09 | Trailer
Claude Lanzmann's epic documentary recounts the story of the Holocaust through interviews with witnesses - perpetrators as well as survivors.

Director:

Claude Lanzmann

Writer:

Claude Lanzmann
14 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Simon Srebnik ... Himself
Michael Podchlebnik ... Himself (as Michaël Podchlebnik)
Motke Zaïdl Motke Zaïdl ... Himself
Hanna Zaïdl Hanna Zaïdl ... Herself
Jan Piwonski Jan Piwonski ... Himself
Itzhak Dugin Itzhak Dugin ... Himself
Richard Glazar ... Himself (as Richard Glazer)
Paula Biren ... Herself
Helena Pietyra ... Herself (as Pana Pietyra)
Pan Filipowicz ... Himself
Pan Falborski ... Himself
Abraham Bomba Abraham Bomba ... Himself
Czeslaw Borowi Czeslaw Borowi ... Himself
Henrik Gawkowski ... Himself
Rudolf Vrba Rudolf Vrba ... Himself
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Storyline

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 and well in many people who still live in Germany, Poland, and elsewhere. Written by Gene Volovich <volovich@netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | UK

Release Date:

November 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Шоа See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,874, 12 December 2010, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$15,642, 2 January 2011
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Black and White | Color (Color / B&W)| Black and White (some scenes)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

All of the unused interviews and outtakes produced for Shoah (1985) are available online as part of the 'Claude Lanzmann Shoah Collection' in the 'Steven Spielberg Film and Video Archive'. They are in the public domain now. See more »

Goofs

Srebnik and Podchlebnik were not the only Jewish survivors of the Chelmno Extermination Camp. Today we know at least 9 by name, but not all survived WWII and/or gave testimonies. Lanzmann probably didn't know then. See more »

Quotes

Franz Suchomel: If you lie enough, you believe your own lies.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in God Is Great and I'm Not (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Mandolinen um Mitternacht
Performed by Peter Alexander (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

Simply Amazing
13 December 1999 | by scribbler51See all my reviews

This eight-hour documentary is NOT what you might think. It contains not one frame of archival footage of Nazi atrocities. Instead, it is dozens of modern (early '80s) interviews with surviving death camp inmates, guards, a commandant and people living near the camps. In several cases, Lanzman takes surviving inmates back to the razed sites of the camps, where they recount the horrific indignities visited upon them. The most hair-raising interview is about six hours in, with a Jewish barber who, in the space of 5 minutes, shaved the heads of his wife, his best friend and his best friend's wife just prior to their being gassed. With tears welling up, he describes shaving their heads in silence and without acknowledgement, so he might continue living and offer testimony to their hellish demise.


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