Films (and images in general) can tell a story like nothing else can. It allows the viewer to temporarily immerse themselves into that world and understand the perspective of those who call it home.
Three Minutes: A Lengthening is a documentary that was recently released on Hulu. In 1938, David and Liza Kurtz went on a grand tour of Europe. Among the places they visited was Nasielsk. Located in Poland, David was born in that town and later emigrated to the United States. The Jewish residents were more than happy to welcome back a native son who had done good.
David took out his camera and started filming. In total, the footage lasts about 3 minutes. Little did any of them know that this mini-film would be one of the last records of the Nasielsk’s Jewish population. Most of them were murdered in the Holocaust. Narrated by Helena Bonham Carter, the film follows the endeavor to not just locate the shtetl, but to put a human face on those who lived there.
One of the best aspects of the movie is that it takes the bigness of the Shoah and makes it feel like the audience is being directly spoken to. With all of the details that we know about the period, it is hard to absorb that millions were murdered because of who they were.
By bringing it down to a micro level, we see the individual lives that were lost and it allows us to (hopefully) do everything we can to make sure that it does not happen again.
Do I recommend it?
Three Minutes: A Lengthining is available for streaming on Hulu.