holocaust films

Ken Burns Trains Camera On Holocaust Heroism

Documentarian helps tell little-known story of Unitarian couple who risked their own lives to save others.

09/07/2016 - 08:52
Staff Writer

Ken Burns’ elegantly paced and photographed documentaries have sketched the contours of the American soul: the freedom/slavery contradiction of Thomas Jefferson; the North/South divide in the Civil War; the individual/collective tension that animates jazz; and the pastoral/urban drama of baseball.

Ken Burns, right, and co-director and producer Artemis Joukowsky discuss the new documentary recently in Los Angeles.

Lanzmann Loses His Distance

‘Shoah’ director’s latest, ‘Last of the Unjust,’ is an ethical lapse, says a longtime champion of his work.

02/17/2014 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

To understand how difficult it is to write this column, you have to consider my history with Claude Lanzmann. Of course, I have seen every one of his films. I have watched “Shoah” — nearly 10 hours long — five times. I have interviewed Lanzmann face to face on four separate occasions. That may not sound like a lot but it’s the longest episodic “relationship” I’ve had with a foreign filmmaker. And I have written about his work enthusiastically more times than I can count, at least a dozen times in 20 years for Jewish Week and that many again elsewhere.

Lanzmann at train station outside of Terezin. Courtesy of Synecdoche/Le Pacte

‘Generation War’ Hampered By Form

Five-hour WWII combat/Holocaust film too bound up in genres’ conventions.

01/13/2014 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

There is no art without limits, as Orson Welles once observed. Creativity has its birth in constraint, and all art is bound by conventions. This is nowhere truer than in film genres, those collections of familiar images, settings, themes and tropes that serve as a guide for both filmmakers and audiences.

Ludwig Trepte and Katharina Schutter in "Generation War." Music Box Films

When Hollywood Went To The Holocaust, For Evidence

Taking in the ‘Filming the Camps’ exhibit.
04/02/2012 - 20:00
Associate Editor

Was there ever a war in which the combatants took movies as seriously as in World War II? Not just on the homefront, with studio dramas such as “Casablanca,” and Germany’s anti-Semitic “Jud Suss,” but on the front itself, where “shooting” meant cameras, along with the guns.

Director John Ford, center with pipe, with his film crew at Midway. Before reaching the camps.

The Banality Of ‘Eichmann’

New drama about the Nazi war criminal’s interrogation offers little more than a melodramatic medley.
11/08/2010 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

‘Eichmann,” a drama about the interrogation of the Nazi war criminal by an officer of the Israeli police after his capture in 1960, has been sitting on the shelf since 2007. Once you have seen the film it is not hard to understand why. What is harder to understand is why someone has actually chosen to release it.

Thomas Kretschmann as Adolf Eichmann.
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