Watch Shoah

  • Not Rated
  • 1985
  • 1 Season
  • 8.7  (10,635)

Shoah is a groundbreaking documentary film directed by the French filmmaker Claude Lanzmann that was first released in 1985. The film is an epic effort to document the atrocities of the Holocaust through interviews with survivors, witnesses, and perpetrators of the Nazi genocide of the Jews. The film took 11 years to complete and features over nine hours of footage.

The film is divided into four parts: Part One, "Chelmno"; Part Two, "Belzec"; Part Three, "Sobibor"; and Part Four, "Treblinka." Each part focuses on a different aspect of the genocide and features interviews with survivors, witnesses, and perpetrators of the various death camps. The interviews are interspersed with footage of the ruins of the camps and the surrounding areas, as well as with footage of contemporary Poland.

Shoah is not a conventional documentary. There is no narration or voiceover, no archival footage, no reenactments. Instead, the film consists entirely of interviews conducted by Lanzmann. The director spent years tracking down survivors, perpetrators, and witnesses, often filming them in secret, and then conducted long, often grueling interviews with them. The interviews are presented without any contextualizing commentary or historical background, allowing the subjects to speak for themselves.

The film's approach is one of sober, unblinking examination of the horror of the Holocaust. Lanzmann is not interested in explaining or analyzing the events of the Holocaust, but rather in bearing witness to them. The film is not about the past, but about the present: the present moment in which survivors and witnesses are still alive, and in which the memory of the Holocaust is still fresh.

The film's power comes from the stories it tells. The interviews are a mix of deeply personal recollections and wrenching accounts of great suffering. The survivors, who often speak in a matter-of-fact tone, are eloquent and moving in their descriptions of the atrocities they witnessed. The perpetrators, too, are highly revealing, offering chilling insights into the minds of those who carried out the genocide.

The film's length is both a strength and a challenge. The sheer duration of the film forces the viewer to engage with the subject matter in a way that a more conventional documentary could not. The film demands that the viewer slow down, listen, and think. But at the same time, the length of the film can be daunting, and some viewers may find it difficult to watch the entire nine hours.

Shoah is a unique and powerful film that stands as a testament to the horrors of the Holocaust. It is not an easy film to watch, but it is a necessary one. The film's approach is one of rigorous honesty and moral clarity, and it offers a vision of the Holocaust that is both haunting and unforgettable.

In conclusion, Shoah is a masterpiece, a landmark in the history of documentary film, and one of the most important documents of the 20th century. It is a film that demands to be seen, and one that will stay with the viewer long after the credits have rolled. Lanzmann's achievement is an extraordinary one, a work of art that is also a moral and historical reckoning with one of the darkest moments in human history.

Shoah is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (2 episodes). The series first aired on October 23, 1985.

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The Second Era, Part 2
4. The Second Era, Part 2
October 23, 1985
Shoah�۪s final passage concludes with powerful testimonials from Warsaw Ghetto resistance fighters who risked their lives to save Jews.
The First Era, Part 1
1. The First Era, Part 1
October 23, 1985
In the first section of his riveting Holocaust documentary, Claude Lanzmann interviews death camp survivors and a former official at Treblinka.
Where to Watch Shoah
Shoah is available for streaming on the Sundance Now website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Shoah on demand at Vudu.
  • Premiere Date
    October 23, 1985
  • IMDB Rating
    8.7  (10,635)