A Film Unfinished

Rated NR 89 minutes 2010

The basis of Yael Hersonski’s Israeli-produced documentary is a WWII Nazi propaganda film from 1942 titled simply The Ghetto. In that macabre original film, shot by German military camera crews inside the Warsaw Ghetto, staged scenes of “Jewish luxury” (with scared extras doing what they’re told at elaborate “parties”) alternate with street scenes of miserable, starving Jews living and dying on the crowded sidewalks. The Nazis’ object appears to have been to capture what they fancied to be the “Jewish folk character,” and the Germans poured serious effort into the project. For audiences with well developed senses of irony and pathos, filmmaker Hersonki’s assembling of the original footage, with its tell-tale outtakes showing that even atrocities were subject to stage direction, may well prove unbearable. For serious Holocaust junkies only. (89 min.)

Film Credits

Director: Yael Hersonski

Producer: Itai Ken-Tor and Noemi Schory

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A Film Unfinished

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