Consider Thorold Dickinson’s 1954 film "Hill 24 Doesn’t Answer" and Baruch Dinar’s landmark 1960 drama "They Were Ten." Each film has a tragic ending in which the death of Zionist patriots is a necessary prelude to the founding of a Jewish state. Then look at Uri Zohar’s "Every Bastard a King" and Joseph Millo’s "He Walked Through the Fields," both made late in 1967 (although the latter is set in 1948), both guardedly upbeat, with heroic protagonists who cheerfully rush through shot and shell to victory.
More than 50 years after Hitler’s death, there’s no consensus among the many Holocaust scholars about the nature of his evil, his motivations, his self-awareness, his hiddenness. As journalist Ron Rosenbaum points out in his new book Explaining Hitler (Random House), there are many competing visions and passionate, bitter disputes.