The Diary of Anne Frank
is a TV series starring
Kate Ashfield, Geoffrey Breton, and Ron Cook.
During World War II, a teenage Jewish girl named Anne Frank and her family are forced into hiding in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands.
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 »
atmospheric telling of the tale of the Jewish girl and her diary
Sixty-three years after the death of Anne Frank, this drama presents the story of her years in hiding in five half-hour episodes, which focus in depth on the events within the annex above her father's factory.
Newcomer Ellie Kendrick plays Anne as a fiery teenager, struggling with inner conflicts and her emerging sexual feelings. This couldn't be presented as clearly in earlier adaptations, and I think this is the first version to use pages of the diary as source material which were originally suppressed by Anne's father, the only person of the eight in the annex to survive the war.
Iain Glen and Tamsin Grieg are both superb as Anne's parents, while Margot (Felicity Jones) and Peter Van Daan (Geoff Breton) present their characters' limited facets very well. Ron Cook, Lesley Sharp, and Nicolas Farrell play the remaining refugees (Mr and Mrs Van Daan, and dentist Mr Dussell).
You get a real sense of what it is to live in a confined space, largely in silence, with only a few hours of respite to go downstairs for food (Peter has to take potatoes from the warehouse below), and to talk and live together in some semblance of real life. For three years this was the life for eight individuals and a cat living in close proximity, sometimes with hope, sometimes with fear.
Rightly, this series ends with details of what happened to each of the refugees, and does not flinch from making clear the plight of the Jews outside of the annex, who are taken away in the night and herded into transports towards their death - such a fate also awaits the occupants of the Dutch annex, and it is with a heavy heart we realise this at the end - even though we knew it all the time, we lived in hope along with them.
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