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Review: Inside Hana's Suitcase

Larry Weinstein's stirring documentary
By ALEXANDRA CAVALLO  |  November 8, 2011
3.5 3.5 Stars



When Fumiko Ishioka, the director of the Holocaust Education Centre in Tokyo, is given charge of a child's suitcase found in the rubble of Auschwitz — a rarity, as most such belongings were lost — it piques her interest. She and her students decide to find out who Hana Brady — the name painted on the suitcase — was. In Larry Weinstein's stirring, eloquently realized documentary, what they find is the story of two young Czechoslovakian siblings sent together to a Nazi death camp and eventually torn apart. Hana perished at the age of 13 in the camp, but her brother George — whom Ishioka and her pupils track down — survived. Told largely through interviews with the clear-eyed students, George's recollections, and snippets of photos and film, this often heart-rending, but ultimately uplifting, journey through history brings to life the story of one small girl among the millions lost. The real buoyancy comes from watching the students learn about both the dangers of hatred and the capacity of the human spirit to endure.

  Topics: Reviews , Boston, George, West Newton,  More more >
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