Lodz Still Life by the Forward

Documentary portrays four generations of Jewish life in Lodz

This article originally appeared in the Yiddish Forverts.

from LOGTV FILMS on Vimeo.

A new documentary film, “Still Life in Lodz,” by Polish-Jewish film director Slawomir Grunberg, portrays four generations of Jewish life in Lodz through the perspective of a still-life painting that belonged to a Jewish family and hung in their apartment from the end of the Czarist empire to the mass expulsion of Polish Jews in 1968.

This is one of many films that Grunberg has produced and directed over the years. His 2015 film, “Karski & The Lords Of Humanity”, about the desperate calls by Polish diplomat Jan Karski to save the Jews from the Nazi genocide, was widely praised and received a number of honors.

The lives of the painting’s owners and their experiences are portrayed through interviews, archival footage and whimsical animation. The film follows Lodz Jews and their descendants as they return to Lodz to visit the apartment where the painting once hung. Among them are Lilka Elbaum, who lived in Lodz until 1968 in the apartment with the film’s titular still-life painting, and Paul Celler, whose mother survived the Lodz ghetto. Celler lives in Livingston, New Jersey, a city which is home to many Polish Jews and their descendants. Elbaum lives in Boston.

In Lodz, Elbaum and Celler tour the city with Israeli artist Roni Ben Ami, whose father and grandfather were leading textile merchants in the city. “Still Life in Lodz” weaves scenes of their visit with archival footage of the city’s residents during the Holocaust and innovative animation, which portray historical Jewish life in the city.

Documentary portrays four generations of Jewish life in Lodz

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Documentary portrays four generations of Jewish life in Lodz

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close