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A Film by Nurith Aviv
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“Mourning is regularly the reaction to the loss of a loved person, or an abstraction which has taken the place of one, such as fatherland, freedom, an ideal, etc.” –Sigmund Freud

Director Nurith Aviv quotes Freud’s simple definition of mourning and loss as it relates to the first post-war generation of Germans and the historical experience of Jews. With the backdrop of a muted and autumnal Berlin, influential German Jewish political theorist Hannah Arendt and prolific actor Hanns Zischler (MUNICH) among others ruminate about the extinguishing of German Jewish life and culture and the lasting intellectual, moral and spiritual void that loss has meant to their fatherland.

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Aviv, a noted cinematographer whose ancestors came from Berlin, has created an elegiac portrait of a homeland that can never exculpate itself from the ghosts of the Holocaust.

"A briskly straightforward work, highly intelligent and ultimately quite moving." —George Robinson, The Jewish Week

"Anchored by a fascinating clip from a 1964 interview with an agitated, cigarette-waving Hannah Arendt, the film is an eloquent reminder of the ineluctable link between language and history." —Jeannette Catsoulis, The New York Times

"A exceptionally intelligent film." —Catherine Humblot, Le Monde

"That Germany should be in a continual state of collective mourning is not surprising or perhaps even unjust. ...LOSS is an unusually brave and sober effort that deserves respectful attention." —Anthropology Review Database

2005 San Francisco Jewish Film Festival
2003 Chicago International Documentary Film Festival

30 minutes / color
Release: 2010
Copyright: 2002
Sale: $248

Subject areas:
Anthropology, Germany, Jewish Film Festivals, Jewish Studies, Philosophy, Political Theory, US & Canadian Broadcast Rights, World War II

Related Links:
Filmmaker's page

Related Titles:
Rabbit à la Berlin: 2010 Academy Award Nominee, Best Documentary Short Subject. The history of the Berlin Wall from the rabbits' point-of-view.

Zorro's Bar Mitzvah: Four 12-year-olds are preparing for their bar or bat mitzvah. A critical and ironic look at Jewish tradition and its interpretations, while exploring the diffuse terrain of adolescence.

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