Documentary צילום

Treasure in Auschwitz

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Director: Yahaly Gat

Cameraman: Yoav Kleinman

55 Minutes
Israel 2005

A young student, Yariv Nornberg, hears from an elderly vendor in a rundown shop a fantastic story about a Jewish treasure buried in Polish soil. His curiosity is aroused when he learns of the location of the hiding place – next to the infamous Auschwitz extermination camp. During the next 5 years, Yariv pursues these lost religious artifacts, hidden in the grounds of the Great Synagogue in the city of Oswiecim (Auschwitz) in 1939. For him, these artifacts embody his own perished family and guide his attempt for closure and acceptance of the Polish people, usually regarded by Jews as collaborators and anti-Semites.

Yariv manages to organize a unique archaeological excavation to unearth the treasure. But as the digging progresses, it becomes apparent that the synagogue’s soil conceals a 60-year-old sinister secret and Yariv and his crew begin to lose hope.

Until one morning a shovel hits a metallic object in one of the ditches.

The search and excavation for the treasure translates within the film to a succession of poignant metaphors – to the Jewish existence in Poland and its annihilation, to the possibility of a dialog between the younger generations, to the capacity of Nazi evilness embodied in the presence of the nearby death camp and above all – to the growing sentiment that only 60 years have gone by and already WW2 and its greatest nightmare – the Holocaust – are tragically transforming into an archaeological exhibit.

First shown at the Jerusalem Film Festival 2005
TV debut: Channel 10, May 2006
Festivals and Awards:
Honorable Mention the Jewish Film Festival, Warsaw
The New York Jewish Festival 2007
The Toronto Jewish Festival 2006
The Jewish Festival Hong  Kong 2006

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