Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Everything Is Illuminated

I have seen this movie a few times now, and every time I see it I can't help but be amazed. It is impossibly difficult to allow comedy into a Holocaust related movie, for several obvious reasons; not only does director Liev Schriber accomplish this, and accomplish it well, but he uses the humor within the movie to move the audience rather than just make them giggle.
The fact of the matter is, the reason this movie hits me as profound is the juxtaposition of the humor vs the tragedy. In essence, this is a sad movie. It's really difficult to make a funny movie when it somehow relates to the Holocaust, and although this is definitely not Schindler's List, the fact of the matter is that it truly and profoundly is a sad movie. The way Liev Schriber takes that sadness, though, and places it next to ridiculousness, adds a lot of depth to the story. It basically allows you to feel humor, and the absurd ways people from two entirely different cultures clash, while you are experiencing the subtext of tragic loss and profound sadness. This new way of feeling when one is experiencing a movie about WWII does more than just make people laugh and cry, it lets individuals feel something atypical from other experiences of watching similar movies. Because you are feeling something entirely new, also, I think it adds to the layers of the movie. Not just about laughing, not just about crying, but about feeling something in a situation that doesn't seem normal, or natural, makes the entire situation more profound.
Overall I think this movie is fantastic, and it certainly fits withing the context of the Pain Seminar in more than one way.

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