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.
Shop on Main Street (128 minutes)
Part of the innovative Czechoslovak New Wave cinema of the 1960s, this Academy Award winning film involves Tóno, a poor carpenter who during the war stands to benefit from the confiscation of a shop owned by a Jewish woman, who because she is elderly and deaf does not understand the increasing dangers around her. A caring relationship develops until Tóno must decide whether he is willing to put himself at risk to protect Mrs. Lautmannová.