Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Film Unfinished

Showing at Hot Docs Film Festival: A Film Unfinished, directed by Yael Hersonski

Synopsis from the Hot Docs website:

Yael Hersonski’s haunting visual indictment masterfully deconstructs the now-infamous unfinished Nazi propaganda film about Jewish life in the Warsaw Ghetto. Discovered years after the war, without a soundtrack, the film has become a resource for historians and documentary filmmakers studying the Holocaust. Ironically, the film is entirely a Nazi fabrication of ghetto life: well-dressed Jews smile as they walk indifferently past the dead bodies of compatriots on the street. So wherein lies the truth? Hersonski screens each of the four reels for survivors who were in the ghetto at the time, scrutinizing each skewed or horrific scene as they recall actual events. These remembrances are layered with powerful testimonials from the original SS cameraman and a guilt-ridden Jewish commander who reveal the manipulations behind each deception. While the Nazis were innovators of propaganda, A Film Unfinished cuts through the film’s contortions and never loses sight of what is true. - Karina Rotenstein

The trailer is here.

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