Feature

Lore

Five Nazi children flee the war’s wreckage.

Directed by Cate Shortland
(Not rated)

***

Australia’s contender for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar relates a coming-of-age story, but it is “far from the ones we usually see,” said Kenneth Turan in the Los Angeles Times. Fourteen-year-old Lore must learn to put aside childish delusions, but the myths clouding her vision are the legacies of her Nazi upbringing, and the journey she must take involves leading four younger siblings across Germany in the chaotic immediate aftermath of World War II. Some viewers might be frustrated that we see almost everything through Lore’s eyes, said Andrew O’Hehir in Salon.com. We rarely even know what the girl thinks of the atrocities she’s forced to confront. But Lore offers “a remarkable visual, cinematic, and moral journey”—one that forces us to question the proper limits of empathy. Saskia Rosendahl is consistently fascinating in the title role, said Joe Morgenstern in The Wall Street Journal. When Lore encounters a young concentration camp escapee who might be an enemy or a savior, a vast array of mixed emotions “plays out with unforced eloquence on Rosendahl’s lovely face.” Your own heart will do somersaults.

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