Hiding and Seeking (2004)
Members of a family try to bridge their differences as they address different interpretations of Judaism in this emotionally powerful documentary. Menachem Daum is a devout Jew, as is his wife, Rivka Daum. During World War II, Rivka's father survived the Holocaust thanks to a Polish family who hid him from Nazi troops in their home, and Rivka and Menachem have planned a trip to Eastern Europe in order to find and meet the Poles who saved her father's life. The couple have two grown sons, whom they wish would join them for the trip; both are Orthodox Jews living in Jerusalem and studying in yeshiva. While Menachem is proud of his sons' faith, he also believes they have set themselves apart from the real world, and fears they've used their devotion as a wall rather than a bridge. Eventually, the two sons join their parents on their journey, and both the parents and their children gain valuable perspectives on one another's points-of-view, especially after meeting the family of heroic Poles. Hiding and Seeking: Faith and Tolerance After The Holocaust was shown in competition at the 2002 San Francisco Jewish Film Festival. … More
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Critic Reviews for Hiding and Seeking
Explores the greater effects of the Holocaust on faith, not only in God but in other people, while revealing a single family's tale of survival.
The singular beauty of Hiding and Seeking is its delicate but relentless probing of ambiguous motivation on the one hand, and its hearteningly conciliatory spirit on the other.
What makes the film both watchable and important is the candid, untidy way it presents conflicting emotions and multiple points of view.
A thoughtful documentary in which the filmmaker sets out to overcome the religious insularity of his two adult sons.
Its examination of the long-lasting effects of evil on the psyche of its victims and their descendants is both thoughtful and much needed in these increasingly polarized times.
With his filmmaking partner Oren Rudavsky, Menachem Daum is a rare documentarian willing to explore the painful subject of some Orthodox Jews' intolerance towards gentiles, and he does it in a highly personal fashion.
With the feel, look and indulgences of a sincere, even well-made home movie, it's an awkward fit for theatres.
When the Daum's return from Israel, in one of the most impactful scenes, the boys sit with their maternal grandfather, an old wrinkled Jew with a short white beard, and ask him why he never tried to contact the Polish farmer who selflessly saved his life.
"All religions today are in danger of being hijacked by extremists." This quote and theme makes H&S one of those poignant films with respect to current world events.
If the film is a humanist's vision, it is also is a genealogist's dream come true-of spiritual and historical discovery despite insurmountable odds.
Ultimately, Hiding and Seeking is about finding the humanity in all people. This PBS-bound documentary lives up to that ambitious ideal.
What initially has a home-movie feel evolves into a deeply moving personal essay -- one with a universal message about the importance of healing past wounds and building a hatred-free future.
Shot on video and starring his family, Menachem Daum's latest documentary may be closer to a home movie than the usual theatrical release, but in its own quiet way, it's among the most important films you're likely to see this year.
Tackles the significant questions of religious intolerance and of all religions in danger of being hijacked by extremists.
'Hiding and Seeking' fuses documentary reality with the appealing flow of story's conflict, complications, development and resolution.
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