October 1944, Auschwitz. Saul is a Jewish prisoner working as a Sonderkommando. When he discovers the body of a boy he takes for his son, Saul decides to carry out an impossible task: save the child’s body, find a rabbi to recite the mourner’s Kaddish, and offer the boy a proper burial.
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It is stating the obvious to say of any Holocaust film that it shows the concentration camps as an earthly hell. But the observation takes on genuine meaning with Hungarian drama Son of Saul, which not only gives the metaphor a powerful new charge in terms of dramatic intensity, but represents a serious attempt to rethink the visual codes of depicting the atrocities of the Shoah.