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Rembering a Murdered child

Remembering a Murdered Child
The 18,000 deported and murdered Jewish children from The Netherlands, 1942-1945
42 minutes (2012)

The film is based on the book In Memoriam by Guus Luijters. The gripping film Remembering a Murdered Child tells the story of 9 anonymous Dutch children who were deported from the Netherlands and murdered. Former non-Jewish classmates, neighborhood children and friends, tell about their murdered Jewish boyfriend and girlfriend. These are small childhood memories, that tell about a bow in the hair of a girl, a frog in a well or the big brown eyes of a baby. Former Dutch cabinet Minister Frits Korthals Altes remembers his classmate Riekje Teixeira de Mattos, she was 13-years old when she was killed in Auschwitz. Dutch actress Nelly Frijda remembers the baby Edje van Sijes of whom she was babysitting at the beginning of the occupation. Edje was four years old when he was murdered in Sobibor. Photographer Eddy Posthuma de Boer talks about the twins brothers Harold and Paul Duizend. He waved ‘good bye’ to them at the Olympia Square in Amsterdam, when the sat in tram-line 24 when they made their one way trip were to Westerbork and Auschwitz. Writer-journalist Henk ten Berge, who lived in the province city of Alkmaar, tells about his friend Peter Israels, and the 'story of the frog’. After all Jews of Alkmaar were rounded up, he never saw him again. Nothing is known about the eleven year old Sientje Abram, who lived in Rapenburgerstraat in Amsterdam, except the fact that she was killed in Auschwitz. No photo, no memory. Guus Luijters has made a reconstruction and tells in the film about her, based on the summary of data on her short life in the old Jewish quarter of Amsterdam.

Remarkably little is written about children in war, and very strikingly, they played only a role in the background, and mostly anonymous. Of Anne Frank we know practically everything, but of the Jewish girlfriend next to Anne on her famous birthday photograph from 1939, we know virtually nothing. That was Sanne Ledermann, she was at the age of 15, when she was murdered in Auschwitz.

The book by Guus Luijters and Aline Pennewaard brings for the first time a change, the 18,000 Jewish children deported from the Netherlands, get a description, and of some 3,500 children, portraits are brought together, a work that has taken years to complete. The murdered children are thus removed from the crowd and, after almost 70 years, they got a description and a 'face'.

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Last update: 03-11-2013
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