In Darkness DVD review

  • Actors: Robert Wieckiewicz, Benno Fürmann, Agnieszka Grochowska, Maria Schrader, Herbert Knaup

  • Director: Agnieszka Holland

  • Writers: David F. Shamoon, Robert Marshall

  • Producers: Andrzej Besztak, Charlie Woebcken, Christoph Fisser, Eric Jordan, Juliusz Machulski

  • Format: AC-3, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC

  • Language: Polish

  • Subtitles: English

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

  • Number of discs: 1

  • Rated: R (Restricted)

  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

  • DVD Release Date: June 12, 2012

  • Run Time: 145 minutes

  •             The storyline of In Darkness shares a great deal in common with Schindler’s List, in that it deals with a man who risks his own safety in order to help protect a group of Jews from the devastation of the German army during the Holocaust of World War II. First this arrangement is made merely for monetary purposes, but eventually becomes a moral decision alone. The fact that In Darkness is based on a true story only increases the impact of the content.

                Taking place in a Nazi-occupied city in Poland, a group of Jews begin an escape route into the sewers as a way to escape the ghetto they are confined in, but it ends up serving as an escape from the concentration camps. When they are discovered by a Polish sewer inspector named Leopold Socha, he agrees to use his unique knowledge of the sewers in order to hide them. He does so for a profit, taking advantage of the desperation in the Jewish survivors, though he changes his motives with time.

                The practical issues with the fourteen months spent in the sewer are dealt with in the storyline of In Darkness, from the need for food to an unplanned pregnancy. Socha is forced to risk more and more as he deals with each unique dilemma, determined to protect them even when it means putting himself in danger in the process. In Darkness is a difficult film to watch at moments, especially at 144 minutes, but this 2011 Best Foreign Film Academy Award nominee is also not a film which should be missed.

                The DVD includes a few spectacular special features, both with interviews from director Agnieska Holland (Europa Europa) and real life survivor Krystyna Chiger. 

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