Talking around the Holocaust

Scott Feschuk

National Post


July 14, 2000


During this summer screen season of randy mirth, of death by erect penis, of comical attempts at bovine euthanasia, it would be tempting to conclude that Hollywood filmmakers have about as much use for subtlety and restraint as the purveyors of pro wrestling, talk radio and Pamela Anderson’s rack.

It would also be pretty damn accurate.

This fact may go a long way toward explaining some of the puzzled visages that moviegoers may well glimpse in the audience of Voyages, a French-language film that offers three linked tales about the ho-hum lives of a trio of elderly Jewish women …


Voyages deals with the Holocaust, but is never about it. Rather, the film centres on a group of ageing Jews, their rather tedious modern lives and their borderline obsession with memories


The other two parts of the film, which converge in the picture’s final moments, follow a busload of Jews as they make their pilgrimage to Auschwitz and a 65-year-old woman in Paris who one day picks up the phone to discover that a man claiming to be her father — a man she thought a victim of the death camps — is taking a train from Lithuania to come and meet her.