Watch the whole film here: realeyz.tv/en/aufschub-respite.html
The essay film RESPITE by German director Harun Farocki resurrects film footage shot by Rudolf Breslauer, a temporary inmate of the Dutch transit camp for Jews. The footage was commissioned by the camp's SS commandant. RESPITE won an award at Locarno in 2007.
"That Breslauer was a victim, and eventually a fatality, of the concentration camp system, yet somehow was able to produce a documentary of the daily make-up of camp life is remarkable in itself. Farocki's appreciation and commentary on this footage not only serves a possible purpose of re-consideration of generally accepted visual understandings and impressions of the concentration camp system, but also speaks for how the possible revelations and new knowledge to be found in Breslauer's work will be forever compromised due to the hyper-prevalence of images that speak counter to this documentary work."
(Daniel Kasman. Memories. On Moving Images & Motion Pictures. October 3, 2007)
Renowned Berlin filmmaker Harun Farocki raises questions about the veracity of an image, propaganda and intention: Did the SS officer intend to show camp life as something pleasant, or in fact prevent the inmates from deportation by focusing their skills as workers? Farocki simultaneously gives the perpetrators, and especially the victims of the Holocaust, a face. Nevertheless, for most of the inmates filmed, the camp was only a RESPITE before the extermination camp.
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