The Unseen Holocaust: Recent Polish Films
Where: Museum of Jewish Heritage
36 Battery Pl.
646-437-4202 Price: All-access pass to the series: $15, $12 members
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The fall of communism ushered in a new era of candid and artistically accomplished Polish filmmaking about the Holocaust. This week-long series presents features, documentaries and short films rarely seen in the United States. Discussions with experts will follow the screenings.
Sunday, October 25, 2pm
Post-screening discussion with Andrzej Krakowski, Professor of Film at City College, CUNY
(Ambulans, 1961, 11 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Janusz Morgenstern
This film presents the story of Jews and other prisoners duped into entering specialized cars used to murder through asphyxiation.
(1989, 88 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Leszek Wosiewicz
Inspired by the searing stories of Polish author and former Auschwitz inmate Tadeusz Borowski, Kornblumenblau tells the story of a Polish musician who survived a death camp through his musical prowess.
Tuesday, October 27, 7pm
Burial of a Potato
(Pogrzeb kartofla, 1991, 96 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Jan Jakub Kolski
Mateusz, a Polish soldier, returns to his village after years in a concentration camp. Though not a Jew, he is branded one by his neighbors, who he suspects of murdering his son to obtain his land.
Wednesday, October 28, 7pm
Post-screening discussion with Michał Oleszczyk, Director of the Gydynia FIlm Festival (Poland)
Just Beyond this Forest
(Jeszcze tylko ten las, 1991, 86 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Jan Łomnicki
A former washerwoman in a Jewish household at first resists her employers’ pleas to take their daughter out of the ghetto. Eventually acquiescing, she takes responsibility for the child, ultimately sacrificing herself to bring her to safety.
(Wyrzutki, 2013, 17 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Sławomir Grünberg
Polish villagers recall the desperate efforts of Jewish parents who threw their children out of the cattle cars rather than risk what awaited at their destination.
Sunday, November 1, 2pm
(Miejsce urodzenia, 1992, 47 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Paweł Łoziński
This gripping murder mystery documentary follows Polish-Jewish author Henryk Grynberg, who survived the war in hiding with his mother. Years later, he returns to his village in Poland to discover who killed his father and younger brother.
(Inwentaryzacja, 2010, 9 min., Polish with English subtitles)
Directed by Paweł Łoziński
This short film presents a sensitive depiction of the restoration of Warsaw’s famed Jewish cemetery by young Poles.