Top 10 Holocaust Films

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This list is dedicated to the 6 million Jews and 5 million more who lost their lives in the hands of the Nazis. These films help keep the memories alive and educate the younger population about many historical wrongs. We can still right the wrongs and help change the world and its quality of life.


1. The Pianist (2002):

This film is an adaptation of the autobiography of Wladyslaw Szpilman and is critically acclaimed. At the academy awards, it won awards for Best Director (Roman Polansky), Best Picture and Best Actor (Adrien Brody). The whole movie is about a pianist (Szpilman) who tries to escape death during the Holocaust. He relied mostly on non-Jewish citizens to help him survive deportation and death.


2. Schindler’s List (1993)

This is a biographical film about Oskar Schindlar, a business man who saved the lives of thousands of Polish Jewish people during the Holocaust by employing them in his factory.

Schindler was a war profiteer and Nazi who came into Krakow and bought an army kilt factory after bribing SS and Wehrmacht officials. He employed thousands of Jews in the factory; a decision which ultimately saved their lives. Schindler stuck by this decision, especially in trying times. He is ultimately seen as siding with the Jewish workers making sure they are not sent to Auschwitz. The film won a total of 7 Oscars, 3 Golden Globes and 7 BAFTAs.


3. Defiance (2008):

Daniel Craig stars in this film about 4 Belarussian brothers, who along with 1000s others successfully hide from the Nazis. The movie chronicles the first half of the evasion from Nazis and their struggle to stay alive despite famine, hunger and disease. It was nominated for Best Original Score at the Academy Awards.


4. The Boy in Striped Pajamas (2008):

This is a film based on the 2006 novel of the same name by John Boyne. It explores the atrocities of the Holocaust in the lives of 2 boys: a Jewish boy (Shmuel) and a German boy (Bruno) whose father is a German Nazi commandant. The film revolves around the bond two boys share despite religious differences. The bond both children share will make viewers heart rip with torment. The film was nominated for the British Independent Film Award and at the Chicago and British Film Festivals, despite unclear criticisms.


5. Anne Frank: The Whole Story (2001):

This film is based on the real life diary of Anne Frank, a girl who was tragically murdered in the Final Solution/Holocaust. The film began in 1939 at the beginning of WWII and chronicled the life of Anne Frank until her dying days. The film continued to examine post-war trauma and stories told by Otto Frank, Miep Gies and other Opetka employees. Ben Kingsley (Otto Frank) and Brenda Blethyn (Anne Frank) play outstanding roles in the film. New York Times called this film “undeniably powerful”. It won an Emmy Award for the Best Miniseries.


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