Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Hitler's Children (2011)

Director: Chanoch Zeevi. 83 min. Not Rated. USA/Germany/Israel. Documentary.

The descendants of Himmler, Goering, Hoess, and Amon Goeth (made famous by Schindler's List) among others, are interviewed about how their feeling of guilt drove them to change their names, write books chastising their forefathers, and sterilize themselves so they wouldn't pass on their "Nazi genes". Does a decent job at showing the crushing pressure they're living under, but occasionally becomes cliche (one telling a class of Israeli children he would kill his grandfather Rudolph Hoess if he was here), and fails to explain why these people feel such a huge burden, when they had no say in the matter?

Mo says:


  1. I lost myself in this fine documentary and found it very disturbing.

    The far right is gaining political ground throughout Europe at the moment and we need to be reminded of the horror of just what can happen when we let hate rule our lives.

  2. There's no question the documentary is captivating. What you're concerned is actually mentioned in the film, that if Europe's economy goes down, these events could happen again.

    One thing I wanted to know more (something only Goeth's daughter touched upon) was how the community in general reacts to these people? Are they directly or indirectly chastised, or treated with compassion as shown in the Auschwitz museum?

  3. During the movie, I was trying to imagine how it would have felt to be in these descendants' shoes. For instance, the son of Hans Frank, who has spent a lifetime researching and writing books about how evil his father was. Has he put all this effort to prove the horrors of Nazism to others, or is this a self-cleansing act to prove to *himself* that he has nothing to do with his father actions?