Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Korczak again

http://movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/Korczak/70242096?trkid=13641790 A nice biography of Janusz Korczak, who managed to keep his humanity living in WW II Poland. B&W, with subtitles might bother some, but its a well done film about an important player in the Warsaw Ghetto. It's not sugar-coated like "Swindler's List," and although an American audience might see the...read more ending as ambiguous, Polish film goers knew what smoke implied The...read more archival film clips were very apparent but added to the movies credibility as the life in Korczak's orphanage was clean and superior to the rest of the ghetto. I will return to this movie again, it was that remarkable.. This film does a good job of showing some aspects of life in the Warsaw Ghetto that are often overlooked in other historical accounts. The impossible situation within the Jewish Council is given fair treatment, and there is some mention of the smuggling activity that became such an important means ...read moreof keeping people alive. Even the cemetery provides the setting for one scene, and it was indeed a place where smugglers and others often managed to meet and conduct business. The material, overall, lines up well with Emmanuel Ringelblum's historical record, and that is one of the most important strengths that a film on this subject can have. There has been some criticism of the film, especially from the French, because the Poles were not often seen in the story, and there were many cases of both heroic altruism and base treachery among the Poles. Some have accused the director of trying to absolve the Poles of their own faults in the historical record. I don't think that the film was trying to do that. I focused on the main character, and spent nearly two hours on developing his story. It can't be expected to cover everything. It doesn't really add much to what historians already knew of Korczak, but it is an easily accessible introduction to his enduring sacrifice, and it should add to the number of people who know of his life. The ending is a bit too easy, though. If the film is to be a realistic portrayal, it should have maintained that approach all the way. This DVD was released in the US by Kino Lorber on 14 August 2012. Hailed by the likes of Steven Spielberg as one of the most important European films about the Holocaust it should have been available by this company on Day One. Unfortunately for us, this company is no longer interested in cinema. ...read more They care about streaming TV shows (they're easy and cheap) and no longer are the company they once were.