French filmmaker and journalist Claude Lanzmann achieved worldwide acclaim for his nine-and-a-half-hour cinematic epic Shoah. Unlike other films on the subject of the Holocaust, Shoah used only first-hand accounts from perpetrators and survivors of the death camps, as Lanzmann believed that any attempt to reproduce the history would be to relive the genocide. Born in Paris in 1925, Lanzmann survived the German occupation of France, fought with the French Resistance during World War II, and joined Les Temps Modernes, Jean-Paul Sartre's political-literary journal, in 1952. In The Patagonian Hare, Lanzmann remembers his extraordinary intellectual, political, and creative career, from the youthful résistant, to the culture and commitments that led him to Sartre, to his love affair with Simone de Beauvoir and the making of Shoah.
In conversation with Harlan Jacobson of Talk Cinema.
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