tue 31/01/2023

Holocaust

Watch on the Rhine, Donmar Warehouse review - Lillian Hellman's 1940 play is still asking awkward questions

We’re reminded, in a grainy black and white video framing device, that, as late as the summer of 1941, the USA saw World War II as just another European war. As brilliantly illustrated in Phillip Roth’s The Plot Against America, not only was such...

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Three Minutes: A Lengthening review - superb portrait of a vanished world

We hear the projector whirr as the mute 16mm film flows through the sprockets and on to the screen. For three minutes and a little longer we watch children and adults spilling out of buildings, intrigued by the novelty of a camera on their streets....

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Olivier Guez: The Disappearance of Josef Mengele review - the Nazi who was never found

Bringing Olivier Guez’s novel The Disappearance of Josef Mengele on a beach holiday may seem like an odd choice (such is the lot of a reviewer). This incongruity transformed into something stranger, however, when I learned that the Nazi doctor Josef...

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Total Immersion: Music for the End of Time review - miracles from the house of the dead

History’s most grotesque act of cynicism has to be the model ghetto the Nazis mocked up for the cameras in Terezin/Theresienstadt in October 1944, several days before transporting all the musicians and smartly-dressed attendees present at the...

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Anselm Kiefer Pour Paul Celan, Grand Palais Éphémère, Paris review - an installation of rare profundity

The exhibitions of the German artist Anselm Kiefer have always been spectacular: large works with a numinous presence, often breath-taking and always mysterious. His new installation in Paris’s Grand Palais Ephémère, the temporary structure at the...

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Love and Other Acts of Violence, Donmar Warehouse review - snappy and tightly intelligent but flawed

This is simultaneously a love story and an archaeology of hate, a sparky, spiky encounter between two individuals whose chemistry proves as destructive as it is explosive.Love and Other Acts of Violence opens with a comedic encounter on a dance...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Mr Klein

Joseph Losey’s career covered a great deal of ground, and several continents. From The Boy with the Green Hair, a noirish sci-fi film from 1948, through to his richly psychological collaborations with Harold Pinter, The Servant (1963), Accident (...

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The Champion of Auschwitz review - Polish movie based on a boxer's memoir

It’s a little hard to tell if this film was really intended for an international release, given that its heart is so set on making Polish movie-goers proud of their countrymen. The Champion of Auschwitz recounts the true story of Tadeusz "Teddy...

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DVD/Blu-ray: The Fifth Horseman is Fear

One of several 1960s Czech films which explicitly addresses the Holocaust, Zbyněk Brynych’s 1964 thriller The Fifth Horseman is Fear ( …a pátý jezdec je starch) wrong-foots us from the first frame. There’s Jiří Sternwald’s jagged, brittle score, and...

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Misha and the Wolves review - tricksy documentary about a child survivor

It has become so hard to find funding for non-fiction films that many documentary makers now feel compelled to sell their stories as racy detective yarns, larded with dramatic scores and sneakily obfuscating narratives. There’s a piece of deception...

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Blu-ray: The Pawnbroker

The shadow of the Holocaust and the horror of the camps haunts literature and the cinema: from The Reader to The Night Porter, from Schindler’s List to Son of Saul. For some, the subject was beyond authentic representation – and perhaps only a...

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Psappha, Phillips, Hallé St Peter’s, Manchester online review - Turnage world premiere

Manchester’s Psappha have been proudly flying the flag of new and radical music right through the year of lockdown, and last night’s livestream, with two-and-a-half world premieres, one of them by Mark-Anthony Turnage, showed they haven’t given up...

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