sindhu’s review published on Letterboxd:
i’m not jewish so if any jewish people would like to voice their opinions on this film in the comments please do !!! but....this story is historically inaccurate, emotionally manipulative, and INCREDIBLY exploitative. (re)watching this in my english class right after a holocaust lesson in my ap euro class just intensified my anger and i don’t really understand how ANYONE can get behind this story (my qualms are mainly with the book, which the non-jewish author wrote in TWO AND A HALF DAYS, with presumably little to no research....). there were no children in auschwitz. they were gassed immediately because they weren’t old enough to work.....if you couldn’t be put to use you were killed. the camps were also a THOUSAND times worse than what is shown in this film, and bruno and shmuel’s friendship is something that could never fucking happen. toning down the intensity and terror of the camps to make this fictional story possible is disgusting. and on the topic of bruno and shmuel, the latter is basically used as a prop, and it’s quite sickening to watch. he only exists to entertain bruno, and bring a tinge of sadness to the film (there’s only one other jewish person onscreen, and he as well only exists to fulfill the “sadness factor”). in the end, this story is supposed to function as piece of entertainment (CLEARLY meant for a non-jewish audience.....based on how much care is actually put into depicting the lives and experience of the jewish people in this film), and if you actually enjoy/appreciate it, i urge you to revisit it. this story is a fictionalized, insensitive, disgusting shitshow which has no respect for holocaust victims and their experiences.
(just want to state once more that i am not jewish and don’t want to speak over jewish voices. if any jewish individuals have thoughts on this film/any clarifications please please drop a comment!!)