A Visitor from the Living (1999, France/Germany, 65m, DigiBeta)
Prior to The Last of the Unjust, Lanzmann grappled with the existence of Czechoslovakia’s Theresienstadt, a fortress town that the Nazis presented as a “model Jewish settlement” for propaganda purposes. His tête-à-tête with Maurice Rossel (filmed in 1979) hinges on the latter’s tour of the camp in his capacity as a representative of the International Red Cross—and his subsequent evaluation, in which he accorded it a positive grade; Lanzmann presents the man with damning evidence.
Courtesy of French Cultural Services and the Institut Français
The Karski Report (2010, France, 49m, Digibeta)
Polish Resistance fighter Jan Karski had been interviewed by Lanzmann for Shoah; a quarter-century later, the publication of a new book about Karski which the director perceived as wrongly critical motivated him to mount a rebuttal. The documentary telefilm preserves Karski’s startlingly detailed account of his visits to London and Washington, D.C.—including a meeting with President Roosevelt—in attempting to sound the alarm about the wartime situation in Poland.
In English and French with English subtitles
Introduced by critic Richard Brody (The New Yorker) on Nov 10