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Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah

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Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah

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In 1973, French journalist Claude Lanzmann began work on a film about the Holocaust that ranks among the greatest documentaries ever created. In SPECTRES OF THE SHOAH, the iconoclast opens up for the first time about the trials he faced while creating his magnum opus and the weight it left him carrying. In addition to his years spent tracking down Nazi officials and traumatized death camp survivors, the filmmaker – who passed away in 2018 – also discusses his teenage years fighting in the French Resistance, his relationship with existential philosophers Simone de Beauvoir and Jean‐Paul Sartre, and his hopes for the future.

Running Time: 40/58 min.
Subject(s): Biography, European History, Genocide, Holocaust, Philosophy, War
Language(s): English, French
Subtitles: English
Director(s):
Producer(s): Adam Benzine
Cinematographer: Alex Ordanis
Editor(s): Tiffany Beaudin
Production Company: Jet Black Iris

Press

  • The Seattle Times
    “Powerful almost beyond words... a portrait of a man whose relationship with time and the world is altered by his dogged commitment to an epic mission.”
    Tom Keogh
  • Variety
    “Utterly powerful... a fascinating portrait of a man openly pessimistic about the world, and a unique distillation of a creative process that yielded one of the most powerful cinematic documents of our time.”
    Kristopher Tapley
  • Indiewire
    “This film is incredibly moving... the insight into how Lanzmann evolved from a journalist to a world-class historian elevates Lanzmann to the height of a hero and Mr. Benzine, as his messenger, also attains an historical significance. Both film are testament to a devotion worthy of enshrinement.”
  • The Toronto Star
    “Will come as a stunning revelation to both people who have seen Shoah and people who have not.”
    Martin Knelman
  • Time Out New York
    “It’s astounding that within the making of this film’s fleeting 40 minutes, we come to an emotionally rich appreciation of the project that marked [Lanzmann] for life.”
    Joshua Rothkopf
  • Prospect magazine
    “Pays fitting tribute to a master of European cinema.”
    Jonathan Derbyshire
  • The Globe and Mail
    “Fascinating and upsetting... I don’t often wish for a film to be longer.”
  • NOW magazine
    “Taut and focused... think of it as an essential supplement to one of the most important documentaries ever made.”
    Norman Wilner

Festival Participation

  • 88TH ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS - 2016
    Nominated Short Films
  • CANADIAN SCREEN AWARDS - 2017
  • WARSAW JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL - 2016
    BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY
  • 44TH ANNUAL GRIERSON BRITISH DOCUMENTARY AWARDS - 2016
  • CANADIAN CINEMA EDITORS (CCE) AWARDS - 2016
    BEST EDITING IN DOCUMENTARY - SHORT FORM
  • THESSALONIKI DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL - 2016
    AUDIENCE AWARD FOR BEST INTERNATIONAL DOC UNDER 45 MINUTES
  • LOS ANGELES ITALIA FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS - 2016
    BEST SHORT FILM OF THE YEAR
  • CINEMA EYE HONORS - 2016
  • INTERNATIONAL DOCUMENTARY ASSOCIATION (IDA) AWARDS - 2015
  • HOT DOCS FILM FESTIVAL - 2015
    HONOURABLE MENTION

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