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My Father’s Secrets: The Shoah Explained for Kids, a moving and educational animated film

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Out in theaters on September 21st, My Father’s Secrets is an animated feature film that brilliantly tackles the subject of the Holocaust. Focus on this tender and educational film directed by Vera Belmont.

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Recommended from 8 years

Directed by Vera Belmont, My Father’s Secrets takes us to 1960s Belgium. Michelle and her brother Charlie had a happy childhood in a Jewish family.

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Their father, quiet and discreet, does not reveal anything about his past. Two brothers imagine him as a great adventurer, a pirate or a treasure hunter… but what is he hiding?

The artwork is taken from the graphic novel The second generation – what I didn’t tell my father By Michelle Kichka. The son of a Holocaust survivor, he recalls a youth spent in the shadow of the Shoah.

“Telling it in comics seemed to me the best way to touch the hearts of readers of all ages, through humor, poetry, distance and imagination to create an intimate and personal relationship with the reader.The author explains.

Kids will love it Follow the adventures of Michelle and Charlie, the adventurous and rebellious spirit of these two brothers. Despite the complicated background story of the Shoah, they will be able to identify with the journey of these two idealistic and dreamy young boys who imagine their father as an adventurer or treasure hunter.

Director Vera Belmont has long wanted to dedicate a film to the Holocaust and found such an undertaking impossible. His previous films, Milena and Saving the Wolves, were already made during and after World War II. His family members were deported themselves.

“I always thought you couldn’t shoot in a concentration camp. How do you show Auschwitz? How do you show something that isn’t visible?”, asks the director. Michel Kichka’s adaptation of the comics allowed him to approach the topic without showing the camps and ask the following question: how to live after escaping from the camps?

Thus, the choice of animation is not neutral: “Indeed, with its elegance and precision, painting makes it possible to represent the ‘unrepresentable’ and to approach the most serious questions with lightness and humor.”– says the director.

Tender and educational film

What might be bothering them: Although the story is light-hearted and told through the eyes of two young boys, more sensitive children may be frightened by the Holocaust narrative.

That’s why it was necessary for Vera Belmont to adopt a tragicomic tone that combined childhood indifference to the tragedy of history without telling the story at face value:

“If the life of the Kichka family is marked by the Shoah, it is also crossed by life’s little ironies, everyday jokes, arguments, stories of friendship and love. The film does not want to leave any moment of everyday life unattended. life, nothing will be lost either to the great story or to the men and women who make it.”

What will they keep inside: The choice of animation makes it possible for younger generations to come and understand the events of the Holocaust, as Vera Belmont reminds us:

“At a time when France is republishing Mein Kampf; When racial theories gain strength in political discourse; where anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, xenophobia deeply affect the social body; Where other people, foreigners, young men are stigmatized. In the suburbs, it becomes a media refrain, it seems urgent and necessary to return once more, always to return to the worst human history of the 20th century.

We must return to it to emphasize how disgusting, unacceptable the ideology that underpins these positions is, and how new generations must measure the enormous danger it represents.supports the director.

My Father’s Secrets hits theaters on September 21.

Source: allocine

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