Image Before My Eyes

Overview

Jewish life in Poland between the end of the first "Great War" in 1918 and the beginning of World War II is the subject of this documentary that aims to illustrate both the complexity and the traditions of a culture that was almost completely destroyed by Hitler's "final solution." Director Josh Waletsky uses footage from 1930s home movies, photographs, interviews with survivors of the holocaust, and telling narration to paint a picture of a rich and multifaceted culture, thriving within a broader Polish society....
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Overview

Jewish life in Poland between the end of the first "Great War" in 1918 and the beginning of World War II is the subject of this documentary that aims to illustrate both the complexity and the traditions of a culture that was almost completely destroyed by Hitler's "final solution." Director Josh Waletsky uses footage from 1930s home movies, photographs, interviews with survivors of the holocaust, and telling narration to paint a picture of a rich and multifaceted culture, thriving within a broader Polish society. Scenes of family life in village and town, a look into an educational system that was advanced for its day, and widely disparate stands on Zionism, socialism, and unions round out this view of a community of 3,500,000 people just before WW II. Jewish culture in Poland struggles to retain its solidity as pogroms and prejudice increase; but emigration slows down in spite of the growing reality of harsher treatment -- there is no money for most Jews to emigrate, and no nation willing to take them in any significant numbers, if at all. The result of Hitler's extermination campaign and the inability to escape it was that only 250,000 Polish Jews were left at the end of WW II. This documentary shows what that loss meant in simple human terms, beyond the shocking numerical totals of murdered victims.
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Special Features

Commentary with director Josh Waletzky; Study guide with historical background and questions for discussion; Filmmaker biography; Interactive menus; Scene selection
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/25/2006
  • UPC: 767685972533
  • Original Release: 1981
  • Rating:

  • Source: New Video Group
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:28:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 48,719

Cast & Crew

Technical Credits
Joshua Waletzky Director, Editor, Producer
Edward Gray Cinematographer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Image Before My Eyes
1. The Setting [6:19]
2. Faraway Lands [8:10]
3. Making a Living [9:02]
4. Zionist Activity [10:01]
5. "To the Stars" [8:42]
6. Secular Life [5:38]
7. New Horizons [10:06]
8. Among the Organized [7:52]
9. Awakening Youth [8:26]
10. Darkening Clouds [5:28]
11. The Great Majority [8:51]
12. Credits [2:00]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Image Before My Eyes
   Play
   Scenes
   Extras
      Audio Commentary
         Hear Director Josh Waletzky Comment on the Making of Image Before My Eyes: On/Off
      Filmmaker Biography
      About the Yivo Institute
      About Docurama
      Docurama Trailer Park
         Bob Dylan: Dont Look Back
         Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills
         Andy Goldsworthy River and Tides
         The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill
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