Forbidden Films (2015)
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Critic Reviews for Forbidden Films
Forbidden Films offers fascinating clips from such notorious efforts as The Eternal Jew, Jew Suss and The Rothschilds. All were made to incite anti-Semitic passions and justify Nazi atrocities.
Of more than 1,200 films produced under the Nazi regime, to this day Germany bans about 40 it has deemed dangerous propaganda. Why that is so, and whether it does any good, is the ostensible subject of Felix Moeller's documentary.
This is a documentary fascinated with and fearful of cinema's potency, but it's also devoted to the idea of open discourse, a stance that underlines the urgency of thinking about film critically.
Moeller gives opponents of censorship the last word; meanwhile, his selection of clips of the censored films offers surprising glimpses of the cinematic unconscious at work.
Moeller's documentary has taken an important step toward opening a discussion that can only be more useful than silence, or than the warehousing of these films in a structure where they remain unseen, prohibited-and liable to explode.
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