Shoah, the epic 1985 documentary about the Holocaust, will stream online beginning on Nov. 9. Claude Lanzmann’s groundbreaking nine-and-a-half hour film, which includes interviews with Jewish concentration-camp survivors and their ex-Nazi oppressors, will be viewable on SundanceNow Doc Club, the member-based video streaming service.
When Shoah originally screened in 1985, it shocked audiences. Not because of any depictions of atrocities (no archival camp footage was used), but because of the testimony of those they lived through it. “It is an enormous fact, a 550-minute howl of pain and anger in the face of genocide,” Roger Ebert wrote in his rave review. “It is one of the noblest films ever made.”
Lanzmann’s documentary, which was the culmination of 11 years of research and interviews by the French filmmaker, was recently restored for a Criterion Collection release, but it’s never been viewable online. “Shoah is a landmark both of filmmaking and history,” said Thom Powers, SundanceNow Doc Club’s curator. “For many years Claude Lanzmann’s herculean effort to preserve memory was incredibly hard to see. Now audiences have a fresh opportunity to experience this work of great profundity.”