Holocaust Memorial Day

A sobering day for many, this year marking 70 years since the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp, a name which will forever be associated with unspeakable evil.

On such a day, a film blog has little to offer in terms of analysis, or comfort, or commentary. However, it seems appropriate to recommend a viewing of a documentary which is regularly considered to be one of the greatest films ever made but, more importantly, is also considered to have transcended cinema to stand as a defining account of the Holocaust.

It will come as no surprise to learn that Shoah (Cluade Lanzmann, 1985) is not an easy watch. Containing over 9 hours of interviews with survivors, bystanders and perpetrators, it probes deep into disturbing areas of the human psyche, as it reveals the personal horrors of those who lived through such times. It isn't easy viewing, because it shouldn't be easy.

Shoah screens this week on BBC in two parts - the first half is now available on iPlayer, the second half screens at 7.00pm on BBC4 on Sunday 1st Feb.


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