Unseen interviews with Holocaust survivors from Brookline, Massachusetts, locked away for decades, have been brought to life by a local filmmaker in a new documentary.
More than eighty hours of these interviews were condensed in a new film called “Soul Witness, The Brookline Holocaust Witness Project.”
The production was a labor of love by producer and director R. Harvey Bravman. He found the lost tapes in a cabinet in Brookline. The Holocaust survivors described what they saw in death camps, their lives in the war, and how they survived.
Bravman said he worked on the documentary for countless hours, “I felt a great responsibility – I felt that anything I edited out may not be seen by anybody and their words and their messages are so important – so if I edited something out I would have to take walks and try to forgive myself for doing it.”
Henry Lefman is one of the Holocaust survivors who is featured in the film. He was the only member of his family to survive the Holocaust. His father was severely beaten by Nazi guards. The lost tapes reveal his last words to his son in one the camps
“Remember my son, you must live. You must survive. You must survive. And I’ll be with you. I’ll be with you. I did everything possible to survive and survived I did”
Lefman walked to freedom from the Nazi labor camo and made it to Brookline to live the American dream. Lefman’s daughter Cheryl said the documentary is a living memorial to her late father, “it’s especially meaningful to me and my family because through this documentary my father was able to fulfill that promise and he was able to tell his story.”
“Soul Witness, The Brookline Holocaust Witness Project” premieres at the Coolidge Corner Theatre on January 26.
For more information on how to see the film log on to Coolidge.org.