Watch The Rape of Europa
- 1 hr 57 min
The Rape of Europa, directed by Richard Berge, Nicole Newnham, and Bonni Cohen, is a powerful documentary that follows the story of the systematic looting of Europe's art treasures by the Nazis during World War II. The movie takes a deep dive into the catastrophic impact of Hitler's military campaign on art and cultural heritage, and the efforts made by art historians and conservationists to save these treasures from destruction.
The movie is based on a book of the same name by Lynn H. Nicholas, and features interviews with a number of art historians, curators, and museum directors, as well as survivors of the war and their families. The film also includes rare archival footage and photographs, together with dramatic reconstructions that bring to life some of the key moments in the story.
The movie begins by setting the context of the war, and showing how the Nazis used art as a tool of propaganda to promote their ideology of Aryan supremacy. It goes on to describe how the Nazis created a vast network of art dealers, collectors, and thieves who were tasked with acquiring works of art from across Europe, ranging from masterpieces by Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Raphael, to entire inventories of museums.
The movie describes how the Nazis used art as a form of currency, trading it for supplies and weapons, and how they stored the stolen artworks in secret caches across Europe. The film shows how these caches were discovered by Allied forces after the war, and how the artworks were recovered and returned to their rightful owners.
The movie also explores the story of the famed Amber Room, a treasure of the Russian Tsars which was looted by the Nazis and disappeared without a trace. The film follows the efforts of a group of art detectives who have spent years trying to trace the whereabouts of the missing room, and provides an intriguing insight into the complex world of international art theft.
Throughout the movie, there are powerful interviews with survivors of the war, who describe the impact of the looting on their lives and their communities. One particularly moving interview is with the granddaughter of Edvard Munch, whose iconic painting The Scream was stolen from a Norwegian museum during the war. She describes how her family was devastated by the loss of the painting, and how she has spent her life fighting to recover it.
The Rape of Europa is a deeply moving and informative movie, which provides a fascinating insight into a little-known chapter of World War II history. It highlights the importance of art as a symbol of cultural identity and resistance, and the vital role that museums and cultural institutions played in preserving Europe's artistic heritage during one of its darkest periods. Overall, this is a must-see movie for anyone with an interest in art, history, or human rights.
The Rape of Europa is a 2007 musical with a runtime of 1 hour and 57 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 8.3.