We will watch and discuss a film that is important not only as a work of cinema art, but was also essential in leading to greater awareness of the role played by nations other than Germany (in this example, Italy, France or Czechoslovakia) in the Shoah. A film that deals with the role of outside witnesses – those who saw the tragic fate of European Jewry about to unfold and then must make deeply personal decisions regarding their own actions. We will introduce the film with a short lecture placing the film within it's historical context and afterward there will be an opportunity for general discussion.
The Garden of the Finzi-Continis (95 minutes)
This Academy Award winner for Best Foreign Film deals with a group of young friends who must contend with the increasing tide of antisemitism enveloping their lives in Mussolini’s Italy. As antisemitism closes in around them, they find a temporary respite in the luxurious surroundings of the walled estate owned by the Finzi-Continis, a fabulously wealthy and sophisticated Jewish family.