Outside of your family, no one knows you like your best friend. It is a connection that can hopefully withstand whatever life throws at it.
The new Netflix movie, My Best Friend Anne Frank, premiered last year. It tells the story of Hannah “Hanneli” Goslar (Josephine Arendsen), who was best friends with Anne Frank (Aiko Beemsterboer) before the Nazis tore their world apart. The film flashes back between two different time periods. The first is the semi-carefree normal teenage girl experience that we all can relate to.
The second is a few years later, in Bergen-Belsen. Up to this point, Hannah, her father, and her baby sister have received “special treatment” due to having passports to pre-Independence Day Israel (known then as Palestine). When she hears that Anne is alive and in the camp, Hannah has to make a choice. She can either do nothing or try to help Anne, knowing that she could possibly be killed in the process.
We all know Anne’s story. This is an angle that adds to her humanity and universality. It also points out (which is unfortunately still necessary), that the Jews were top on the list for extermination and reminds the viewer that Anne was killed because of the faith she was born into.
The problem is that the drama is a little slow. I understand the reason for the pace, but it could have been picked up a little. By the time we get to the scene in which Anne and Hannah are reunited, I did not feel what I expected to feel.
Do I recommend it? I am leaning toward yes.
My Best Friend Anne Frank is available for streaming on Netflix.