Passport to Freedom – Drama


There seem to be quite a few things around at the moment about people escaping the Nazis.  This is one of them: a new TV mini-series about Aracy de Carvalho, a courageous Brazilian woman who was the Chief of the Passport Section at her country’s consulate in Hamburg, and issued visas to desperate Jewish people even when the Brazilian government’s policy was not to do so.  In 1982, she was honoured with a Righteous Amongst the Nations award by Yad Vashem for her brave work.  The series also features a sub-plot about a Jewish cabaret singer with a Nazi lover, which I could have done without: it’s totally fictitious and seems rather tasteless.  But the main plot has been very well portrayed so far, with the second episode showing a powerful depiction of Kristallnacht.

There’s a strange juxtaposition between the glamour of the clubs, the diplomats’ lives and the lives of well-to-do assimilated Jews on the one hand, and the destruction of property, beatings in the street, abandonment of Polish-born Jews in freezing conditions on the border and arrests of people for no good reason on the other hand, and it all comes across very well.   There’s also going to be romance for Aracy, with diplomat and future author  João Guimarães Rosa.   This series is something a bit different, and I’m looking forward to the rest of it.



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