I was drawn to this film because of its premise: Menachem Daum, the son of Holocaust survivors, travels back to the Polish farmer's family that hid his father from the Germans during the war. But this is only half the premise. Menachem brings his own sons along in order to impress on them that gentiles are worthy of a great deal more than the "hatred" that some extremists preach or even the "excommunication" his sons (who now live in Isreal) seem to favor.
The documentary is rough around the edges, has the feel of footage shot by your second cousin, but focuses pretty well on this question: do the atrocities of the Holocaust warrant unyielding distrust of non-Jews? Menachem takes the opportunity to further generalize his fear in the first utterance of the production, "All religions today are in danger of being hijacked by extremists." This broadened theme solidifies "Hiding and Seeking" as one of those poignant films with respect to current world events.
Though some sequences go long, others are hard to hear, and some of the captions are difficult to read, I found this production quite compelling and of almost paramount importance.
Background: For over 25 years Menachem Daum has been interviewing holocaust survivors like his parents, in an attempt to understand their crisis of faith. The first result of this enduring obsession was "A Lie Apart: Hasidism in America. The second effort "Hiding and Seeking" is a deeply felt personal film. It is the second of an intended trilogy which explores Jewish responses to the Holocaust. The third film will focus on the State of Israel.
Interesting note: Tony Scott and cinematographer Paul Cameron sometimes hand-cranked their cameras to slow down or speed up movement.
(This film screened at a Laemmle Theatre.)