Killing Kasztner (2008)
Average Rating: 6.8/10
Reviews Counted: 17
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 4
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 6.3/10
Critic Reviews: 9
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 3
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 93
To an even greater degree than Oskar Schindler, Dr. Israel Kasztner played a key role in saving the lives of well over 1,000 Jews from the Holocaust (1,600 in Kasztner's case; 1,200 in Schindler's), but a fascinating and deeply sad irony lay buried in the differences between the men's stories: Schindler was a Nazi party member who manipulated the Gestapo in such a way that it enabled him to save the said individuals, and he died a veritable hero; Kasztner was a Jew who bargained with Adolf
Oct 23, 2009 Limited
GR Films - Official Site
Did he truly sell his soul, or was he just, as a family member says in the film, the wrong kind of hero? The film fascinates even as the man himself remains elusive.
Director Gaylen Ross assembles a fascinating look at this complex man and the still-smoldering argument about his legacy.
The very things that make Killing Kasztner maddening -- herky-jerky storytelling, heavy-handedness, doomy music, unearned moral certitude -- keep it moving right along.
What emerges is less than an in-depth portrait of a man -- we learn little about him, aside from his intelligence, his charisma and his itch to be near power -- than a study of nationhood, history and the psychology of heroism.
As an examination of what happens when events on the ground collide with national myth and a look at how disinclined complex reality is to fit into tidy boxes, it can't be beat.
The film leaves you with a sense that Kastner's name is a casualty of rhetorical crossfire.
There are deeply complex issues afoot here -- most especially the question of how a country and a people decides who will be its heroes -- and this amateurish film, with its tabloid-TV zooms and hokey visual metaphors, simply isn't up to such complexity.
Gaylen Ross's excellent documentary explores how a forgotten hero of the Holocaust became a political target in Israel.
The 2008 documentary "Killing Kasztner: The Jew Who Dealt with Nazis" is more the latter, and it arguably makes one wonder if there is such a thing as Holocaust minutiae.
Tells a fascinating story in an unwieldy way...a pity the structural flaws undermine its impact.
A well-balanced and provocative documentary that's equally engaging, poignant and illuminating.
Absorbing untangling of how history judges choices made in extreme circumstances. Scrapes the scab off raw ethical, emotional and political perceptions of WWII heroism.
Notable for, if nothing else, introducing a Jewish character endowed with much of the same historical controversy as his German counterparts.
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- Le Juif qui négocia avec les nazis (FR)