Tuesday, May 06, 2014

"Walking with the Enemy" (it's not sleeping), an HBO-like docudrama of anti-Nazi resistance in Hungary; FilmFestDC calls for meeting about its future, asks for help

Walking with the Enemy” dramatizes a lesser known segment of the Holocaust, when the regent (Ben Kingsley) in Hungary, caught in between the Nazis and approaching Russians in 1944, chose Hitler and Eichmann  (Charles Hubbell), and the ultra-fascist Arrow Cross party.   The film tells the approximately true story of Pinchas Rosenbaum, here named Erik Cohen (Jonas Armstrong), who, after being impressed into slave labor during Nazi occupation, escapes during an Allies air raid, steals a Nazi uniform, and masquerades as a Nazi officer to save some of his own people.  He falls in love, sort of, with a local played by Hannah Tointon.

The style of the film (at 130 minutes) is rather like that of a cable docudrama, with sequences of battles scenes, renditions, and excerpts from Auschwitz echoing closing episodes of “War and Remembrance”.
There is an epilogue, set in New York on 1957, which gives a somewhat happy ending for the Rosenbaum family.

The film also shows a lot of the bombing of Budapest, leading to the “shoes” memorial, although the CGI and matte paintings are rather obvious. 

The official site (Liberty Studios) is here. The production company often has worked with HBO, and I wonder if HBO will eventually air it and release the DVD.  It is filmed in full wide screen and the sound track is stunning technically.
I saw the film late Tuesday afternoon in the Cinema Arts in Fairfax Va., which recently went to all digital projection.  There were no previews, and I arrived a minute late or so, partly because of a disruption caused by a bicyclist riding the wrong way on a busy through street, a definite no-no (pun). 
I do want to pass on a little news, that FilmFestDC has an emergency meeting tonight at the Geothe-Institut in Washington DC tonight, link.I will not attend, as I did not learn of it until a little while ago.  You can ask, why did I go to the movies.  What are my priorities?  I share some of that soon on another post on my main blog.   I will be happy to arrange a regular monthly donation through my bank, the way I address a number of other needs (some of which are legacy from my late mother).  As of now, I don’t contact people to solicit or “proselytize” because I foundation as an (amateur) journalist. I get the issue.  More on all of this later. 

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