A TEACHER’S AND STUDENT’S GUIDE TO THE MOST POPULAR CENTROPA FILMS

Centropa has well more than 50 films online. Our historical documentaries delve into the history of specific countries while our personal stories take you through the entire 20th century—as told by those who lived on its front lines.

We know you’re probably pressed for time, so here’s a list to consider—the films we feel you’ll learn the most from, and which will stay with you long after you’ve seen them. But do dig deeper by going into our regular film page it really is a treasure chest of 20th century European Jewish memory.

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Documentaries
...gives an overview of Central Europe for social studies, geography or history classes.
Maps, Central Europe and History

Maps, Central Europe and History

7 minutes. Narrated in English by the late, legendary CBS newsman Morley Safer.

In seven minutes, Morley Safer will take you from the Treaty of Vienna in 1815 through the final collapse of Yugoslavia in 1999.
...provides a brief summary of the Holocaust.
Epilogue: The Ones I Lost

Epilogue: The Ones I Lost

5 minutes.Narrated in German with English subtitles.

A five minute film that begins with snapshots of Jews who were murdered during the Holocaust, followed by three short vignettes in which Centropa interviewees tell us about the ones they lost.
...offers a view of the Holocaust in ways that Hispanic-American students can relate to.
El Otro Camino 1492 is our single most popular film and has been seen more than 330,000 times!

El Otro Camino 1492 is our single most popular film and has been seen more than 330,000 times!

12:12 minutes.Narrated in Spanish with English subtitles

This 11 minute film takes us from Columbus’s journey in 1492 to the siege of Sarajevo in 1992, when Sephardic Jews helped save their city. This film isn’t just for Spanish speakers; it gives students and teachers a very different geographical perspective on the Holocaust—and leaves you with a powerful message about working together.
...challenges our way of thinking of Jews and Muslims working together, and works well for social studies, civics, and current events.
Survival in Sarajevo: Friendship in a Time of War

Survival in Sarajevo: Friendship in a Time of War

11:41 minutes.Narrated in English, with other versions in German, Hebrew, Polish, Hungarian, French, and Romanian.

Our second most popular film. When war came to Bosnia in 1992 and Sarajevo was besieged, Jews and Muslims, Serbs, and Croats, all turned a synagogue into a humanitarian aid agency. So many students, in so many countries, were so inspired by this film we created a student diplomacy completion. Click here to learn more about it.
Personal stories
...can be shown to elementary school students, or teaches about pre-war Jewish life.
Finding Frieda/Losing Frieda

Finding Frieda/Losing Frieda

3 minutes.Narrated in German with English or Hebrew subtitles.

Max had fallen hard. But his girlfriend fled Vienna when the Nazis came. Then on Max’s first day in Tel Aviv...
The Story of the Brodmanns

The Story of the Brodmanns

6 minutes.Narrated in German with English or Hebrew subtitles.

Leopold was acting in a play. He looked into the audience and saw Franzi. And that brought the curtain down for him.
The Importance of a Good Vacation

The Importance of a Good Vacation

5:08 minutes.Narrated in Slovakian, Hungarian, or Czech with subtitles in English or German.

In her 95-years, Katerina Loefflerova said the most important thing she learned was: don’t put off your vacations!
Growing Up Religious

Growing Up Religious

4:54 minutes.Narrated in Hungarian or Czech with English or German subtitles.

The Galperts lived in Munkacs, which had been in five countries in 60 years. Here is his story.
...that tells the story of the Holocaust and is narrated in English. (this film also works very well with younger students)
Return to Rivne: A Holocaust Story

Return to Rivne: A Holocaust Story

22 minutes.In English with German or Ukrainian subtitles.

Shelly and Raya live in North Carolina, and in their late 70s, they returned to the Ukrainian village where they and their mothers were hidden during the Holocaust by a Christian family
...and the story of the kindertransports to England.
A Suitcase full of Memories

A Suitcase full of Memories

30 minutes.Narrated in English or German, with English or Hebrew subtitles.

This powerful film opens with a young girl reading her diary, remembering what it was like to be sent on a train from Vienna to London. But what happened to her parents who stayed behind? Four actors will share with you Lilly Tauber’s story.
...feature Righteous Gentiles who saved the people we interviewed.
Three Promises: The Kalefs of Belgrade

Three Promises: The Kalefs of Belgrade

18:36 minutes.In Serbian with English, German, Slovenian, Hebrew, Greek, Spanish, or Croatian subtitles.

Shown in six international film festivals, here is the story of a mother and her two daughters on the run in Serbia, and the priest who took them in.
A Bookstore in Six Chapters: Renee and Solon Molho

A Bookstore in Six Chapters: Renee and Solon Molho

24:42 minutes.Narrated in English, Greek, Ladino, Spanish, with German or Hebrew subtitles.

Another film festival favorite. Renee and Solon were sweethearts in the Greek city of Thessaloniki. Then the Germans came. How both of them stayed alive—through Christians friends and complete strangers—is remarkable.
...take us from enjoying a normal childhood, being deported to concentration camps, surviving the horrors, and starting life over again.
The Past is Another Country

The Past is Another Country

23:49 minutes.Narrated in German or Hebrew, with subtitles in English or Hebrew subtitles.

Leo Luster and his family were living in Vienna’s second district when Austria was subsumed into the Third Reich. Leo takes us with him on a journey through the Theresienstadt Ghetto, then Auschwitz, and to work camps. Afterwards, he found his mother still alive in Theresienstadt, and the two of them started life over again in Israel.
From Bohemia to Belsen and back again

From Bohemia to Belsen and back again

13:47 minutes.Narrated in Czech with English or German subtitles.

Dagmar Lieblova’s father was a well-respected doctor in their small town in the Czech Republic. They were deported to Theresienstadt; then Dagmar was sent to Auschwitz, a work camp near Hamburg, and was finally liberated from Bergen-Belsen. Afterwards, she became a historian and has been working tirelessly to preserve the memories of others who suffered as she did.
...feature resistance and tell of the Jews who fought back.
The Mayor Who Worked in Hell

The Mayor Who Worked in Hell

17:29 minutes.Hungarian with English subtitles.

Miksa Domonkos had been a hero in the First World War, saved countless lives in the Second World War during the siege of Budapest, and ended up being tortured by the Communists in the 1950s.
Petr Ginz and the boys of Vedem

Petr Ginz and the boys of Vedem

19:22 minutes.Narrated in English.

A 17-minute documentary made for ABC News Nightline, this film shows a group of boys imprisoned in Theresienstadt and how they fought the Nazis—with pencil and paper.
Rifka and Elvira: Growing Up In A Time Of War

Rifka and Elvira: Growing Up In A Time Of War

18:36 minutes.Narrated in Croatian with English subtitles.

Two teenage girls had to make a split-second decision when German troops started streaming in to their cities of Split and Dubrovnik—surrender or join the Partisans? These girls wanted to kick fascist butt. And they did.
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