The new film from Sergei Loznitsa (Maidan, The Event) is a stark yet rich and complex portrait of tourists visiting the grounds of former Nazi extermination camps, and a sometimes sardonic study of the relationship (or the clash) between contemporary culture and the sanctity of the site.
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Lisboa, in these tourist times, it's also an area devastated by a pathetic voyeuristic irruption, being a space in its history of many horrors and misfortunes. In the case of the Holocaust, the images that in their spaces are currently captured should be restrained by a special ethics? The film by refusing a dialectic on the images points out a finger and loses dimension. But points out right,, formally speaking.
A deceptively complex formal essay on past vs present, how we utilize and access collective memory and the modern day obsession with digital documentation over physical observation. The juxtaposition of human tour-herding vs extermination and the garishness of consumerism witnessed through branded clothing create a mesmerising unease. At the end of the day these tourists get to leave. 4 stars Great stuff!