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Holocaust Documentary Films in Leavey Library (DVDs): Concentration Camps

Concentration Camps

Anna s Silent Struggle
"...the moving story of Anna, today an 82 year old woman and how she managed to survive this death camp despite her handicap. For the hearing, Auschwitz is characterized as a place of horrible sounds; shouted commands, screaming, shooting and cries of torture. For the deaf, the terror was silent. 'Anna's Silent Struggle' is the first film documenting the dramatic story of a forgotten group that was able to survive, despite their tremendous handicap..."

Auschwitz: If You Cried, You Died
"Chronicles the journey of two Holocaust survivors, Mike Vogel and David Mandel, as they revisit the hell they knew as Auschwitz; also illustrates how the prejudice, intolerance, and violence that characterized the Holocaust provide timely lessons for all of us today."

Auschwitz: Inside the Nazi State
"...is the result of three years of research, drawing on the close involvement of world experts, recently discovered documents and nearly 100 interviews with camp survivors and perpetrators, many of whom are speaking on the record for the first time…”

Auschwitz: The Final Witness
"Depicts a reunion of three men who survived the Nazi death camps."

Bełżec
"The horrifically efficient Nazi death camp, Belzec, was in operation for less than one year, but witnessed the murder of at least 600,000 Jews. Once the Soviet counterattacks began, the S.S. eliminated all traces of the camp, and the name Belzec faded from the collective conscience. Conceived of by executive producer Claude Lanzman as the last chapter to his epic Shoah,  Guillaume Moscovitz has created a chilling account that's as much about remembrance as it is about the past"

The Bitch of Buchenwald: A History of Buchenwald Death Camp & Its Notorious Commandante, Ilse Koch
"Describes the most famous German accused of having committed atrocities during World War II. Ilse Koch has won a diabolic kind of immortality as the lady with the lampshade made from human skin. Puts her career in context of the German Nazi era. As the wife of a concentration camp commander, she was to grow accustomed to a privileged existence. Her lifestyle was financed mainly through embezzlement. Her activities saw her brought before a court of the SS and later in front of the American Military Tribunal, and finally the German High Court, were she would be found guilty of crimes against humanity."

The Boys of Buchenwald
"Presents the story of young Jewish boys who survived the concentration camps of World War II. How they were rehabilitated into normal society and created a future life for themselves. Also, details how they have kept in contact with one another over the years. Includes and interview with Eli Wiesel who was one of the boys."

Brundibar Revisited
"Hans Kràsa's children's opera, Brundibar was performed more than 50 times between 1943 and 1944 by Jewish children in the Theresienstadt ghetto. The simple story of the struggle against evil was abused by the Nazis as a propaganda tool and was used for by those imprisoned in the camps to symbolize the victory of good over evil. In this documentary a Berlin-based youth theatre group stages the opera. The members of the group are young people from different ethnic backgrounds who live on the fringes of society. Holocaust? Again? Is the first reaction of the members of the theatre company when they hear about their newest project. They start questioning their complacent attitude towards German history. They travel to Theresienstadt to learn about the terrors of the Third Reich, and the conditions in which the opera played such a crucial role. The group is accompanied by Greta Klingsberg, a charismatic elderly woman from Israel and one of the few survivors of the original cast of Brundibar. She takes the young Germans on a trip back in time and, slowly, they start questioning their attitudes and apathy towards German history. When the young actors bow at the end of the premiere of their Brundibar, Greta is sitting in the audience, deeply moved by the performance of her friends."

The Death March of the Jews from the Concentration Camp at Flossenburg
"Flossenburg, the 'forgotten camp' was the third largest Nazi Concentration Camp in Germany. From 1938-1945, more than 100,000 inmates from all over Europe were imprisoned in the main camp and its more than 100 subcamps. As the U.S. Army closed in on the camp in April of 1945, the Nazis marched more thank 16,000 Jews on "Death Marches"under the harshest of conditions; thousands perished. Utilizing archival footage, the illustrations and diaries of the survivors, and interviews with many who participated in the 50th anniversary commemoration of the camp's liberation, we are given a first hand glimpse at the horror that was Flossenburg."

Death Mills; Nazi Concentration Camps; Nazi Murder Mills
"Three 1940s documtaries dealing with the Holocaust and Nazi concentration camps."

Defiant Requiem
"In the face of horrific living conditions, Jewish inmates of Terezin concentration camp--artists, musicians, poets and writers--fought back with art and music. Led by conductor Rafael Schächter, they re-imagined a Catholic liturgical work, Verdi's Requiem, as a condemnation of the Nazis. They performed for Nazi brass, singing what they dared not say. Six decades later, a new conductor and choir take Verdi's Requiem back to Terezin to bring the story of Schachter's artistic uprising back to life."

Le dernier des injustes = The Last of the Unjust
"In 1975 Rome, Claude Lanzmann filmed a series of interviews with Benjamin Murmelstein, the last President of the Jewish Council in the Theresienstadt ghetto in Czechoslovakia, the only 'Elder of the Jews' not to have been killed during the war. From Nisko in Poland to Theresienstadt, and from Vienna to Rome, the film provides an unprecedented insight into the genesis of the Final Solution. It reveals the true face of Eichmann."

Displaced!: Miracle at St. Ottilien
"Two US Army privates, Edward Herman and Robert Hilliard, in World War II keep Dachau and Buchenwald survivors alive following the Liberation. They mount a heroic effort to raise society's consciousness of the tragic situation of the refugees."

Escape from a Nazi Death Camp
"The secret Nazi death camp at Sobibor was created solely for the mass extermination of Jews. But on October 14, 1943, in the biggest and most successful prison revolt of the Second World War, the inmates fought back. Using dramatic reenactments four survivors; Toivi Blatt, Philip Bialowitz, Selma Engel-Wijnberg, and former Russian POW Semjon Rozenfeld, tell firsthand accounts of the day they escaped certain death to freedom."

Escape from Auschwitz
"...tells the incredible story of two young Slovak Jews, Rudolf Vrba and Alfred Wetzler, who managed to escape by hiding in a woodpile for three days, then fleeing across enemy territory, determined to tell the world about the atrocities being committed by the Nazis at the camp."

From the Auschwitz Chronicle
"Attempts to preserve the memory of the human tragedy of the concentration camp at Auschwitz. Contains testimonies of numerous eyewitnesses."

Fuehrer schenkt den Juden eine Stadt = The Fuhrer Gives a City to the Jews
"This is the only film known to be made by the Nazis inside an operating concentration camp. Germany's Ministry of Propaganda produced this 1944 film about Theresienstadt, the 'model' ghetto established by the Nazis in 1941 in Terezin, a town in the former Czechoslovakia. Goebbles intended to use the film to prove to the International Red cross and the world that Jews were being well-treated in the camps. The film, however, is an elaborately staged hoax presenting a completely false picture of camp life. Upon completion, the director and most of the cast of prisoners were shipped to Auschwitz. Only a few survived to attest to the falsity of the film."

Holocaust: Dachau and Sachsenhausen
"A historical account of concentration camps Dachau and Sachsenhausen providing footage of the Jewish Holocaust."

Holocaust: The Liberation of Majdanek
"Never-before-seen footage about the Majdanek concentration and extermination camp. Includes SS officers and Kapos appearing before a Russian Tribunal at Lubin to be accused of their crimes."

Holocaust: Ravensbruck and Buchenwald
"A historical account of concentration camps Ravensbruck and Buchenwald providing footage of the Jewish Holocaust."

Holocaust: Theresienstadt 
"Takes a look at the 'show' camp at Theresienstadt where Nazis could deceive the outside world as to what was really happening to the Jews of Europe, as well as the prisoners themselves."

The Last Witness = Ostatni saiadek
"Holocaust survivor Samuel Willenberg returns to his native Poland to visit the places where he lived during World War II, beginning with Opatow. He recalls the events of the war and the Holocaust and describes his part in the revolt of prisoners in the Treblinka concentration camp on August 2, 1943. He tells how he was one of 400 inmates to escape from Treblinka and retraces the route he took to Warsaw."

Liebe Perla
"During the Nazi regime, Dr. Josef Mengele conducted "scientific" experiments on and shot 'research' footage of a Jewish family of dwarfs. Fifty years later, Hannelore, a short-statured woman born in post-war Germany, set out on a quest to locate the films. During the process, she befriended the only surviving family member, Perla, an actress, now living in Israel."

Liga Terezin
"A documentary film that tells the incredible story of the soccer league which took place in Ghetto Theresienstadt, 40 miles North West of Prague now in the Czech Republic. From 1942 to 1944, Jewish prisoners played hundreds of soccer matches on improvised fields set up in the court-yards of the Barracks where they lived. Thousands of spectators watched a mixture of professional and amateur players and briefly escaped the reality of their terrible plight: the hunger, the sickness and death. All the while they lived in a shroud of fear cast by the terror of the transports that sent people to the 'East' and their certain death."

Memory of the Camps
"When allied troops invaded Germany and liberated Nazi death camps at the end of World War II, they found unspeakable horrors that still haunt the world's conscience. In 1945, British and American film crews accompanying the troops liberating the camps captured these atrocities firsthand. The resulting film directed in part by Alfred Hitchcock but never finished, was discovered by Frontline in 1984 in the archives of the Imperial War Museum. Sixty years after the war ended, Frontline now re-broadcasts this powerful memorial in its entirety."

Night Will Fall
"The story of the incredible efforts made by British cameramen to film and document the unbelievable atrocities the Allies encountered during the Liberation of the German Concentration camps in 1945 at the end of World War II."

Numbered
"Auschwitz prisoners, both Jewish or non-Jewish, were tattooed with serial numbers, first on their chests and then their left arms. An estimated 400,000 numbers were tattooed in Auschwitz and its sub-camps; only some several thousand survivors are still alive today. Numbered is an explosive, highly visual, and emotionally cinematic journey, guided by testimonies and portraits of these survivors. The film documents the dark time and setting during which these tattoos were assigned as well as the meaning they took on in the years following the war. In fact, the film's protagonist is the number itself, as it evolves and becomes both a personal and collective symbol from 1940 to today. These scars, paradoxically unanimous and anonymous, reveal themselves to be diverse, enlightening, and full of life." - kNow Productions website.

Paradise Camp: The Nazi Hoax of a Concentration Camp
"The story of Theresianstadt, a concentration camp during World War II for Czechoslovakian Jews in Terezin, close to the German border in Czechoslovakia. Set up by the Nazis as a showpiece to distract from Auschwitz, its inmates witnessed the production of Paradise Camp, a film to mislead the public about Nazi activities in concentration camps. This film uses photographs, footage and the 'picture-journalism' of Theresianstadt artists and interviews survivors who are now resident in Australia to tell the story."

Prisoner of Paradise
"The startling true story of Kurt Gerron, a well-known and beloved German-Jewish actor, director and cabaret star in Berlin in the 1920's and '30's... [He] was captured and sent to a concentration camp, where he was ordered to write and direct a pro-Nazi propaganda film [entitled Theresienstadt: Ein Dokumentarfilm aus dem jüdischen Siedlungsgebiet]."

René and I
"Documentary on the lives of twins Irene Hizme and René Slotkin who were subjected to experiments by Josef Mengele at Auschwitz."

Return to Reichenbach
"Two women on opposite sides of Hitler's Third Reich meet in Toronto, years after the Second World War - the one, a Jewish girl orphaned by the regime, the other possibly the Nazi guard who protected her. This powerful documentary weaves together their stories, intimately exploring and contrasting their experiences of the war ... and their fraught reunion more than half a century later. Return to Reichenbach is the first documentary in the body of Holocaust material that simultaneously captures the stories of an everyday Jewish girl and a German woman in Hitler's reign. It provides a rare opportunity to view history through their eyes - a survivor searching for closure 50 years later and a German woman who paid a huge price for ideals she blindly supported or was too afraid to oppose." - Moving Images website

Samuel
"A survivor of Treblinka tells his story."

Seed of Sarah
"This video is based on the memoirs of Holocaust survivor Judith Magyar Isaacson. It tells of her experiences, in the Auschwitz concentration camp, through singing and music."

Swimming in Auschwitz: Survival Stories of Six Women 
"Six women Holocaust survivors, currently living in Los Angeles, bear witness to the female experience of life in the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camps."

Theresienstadt, Gateway to Auschwitz
"Chronicles the history of the Theresienstadt ghetto which was used during World War II by the Nazis as a transit camp for Jewish deportees en route to other death camps. Blends the childhood recollections of these survivors with rare archival photos, paintings, drawings by ghetto inmates, excerpts from the children's opera Brundibar, which was performed there, and scenes of a survivors' reunion."

Three Days in Auschwitz
"Award-winning film director, Philippe Mora and music legend Eric Clapton have joined forces to co-produce a very personal film, which details life and death in the Auschwitz concentration camp. Mora blends his art with a journey to the camp itself to recount his family's loss and survival at the hands of the Nazis in Auschwitz."

Voices of the Children
"Terezin, or Theresienstadt, was a concentration camp in Czechoslovakia used by Nazis to disguise their extermination campaign against Jews. This film profiles three people who were imprisoned there as children."