Killing Kasztner
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To an even greater degree than Oskar Schindler, Dr. Israel Kasztner played a key role in saving the lives of well over 1,000 Jews from the Holocaust (1,600 in Kasztner's case; 1,200 in Schindler's), but a fascinating and deeply sad irony lay buried in the differences between the men's stories: Schindler was a Nazi party member who manipulated the Gestapo in such a way that it enabled him to save the said individuals, and he died a veritable hero; Kasztner was a Jew who bargained with Adolf Eichmann for the salvation of the 1,600 (whom he shuttled off to Switzerland on a train), and… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 76%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Did he truly sell his soul, or was he just, as a family member says in the film, the wrong kind of hero? The film fascinates even as the man himself remains elusive."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"What emerges is less than an in-depth portrait of a man -- we learn little about him, aside from his intelligence, his charisma and his itch to be near power -- than a study of nationhood, history and the psychology of heroism."
‑ Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle
"There are deeply complex issues afoot here -- most especially the question of how a country and a people decides who will be its heroes -- and this amateurish film, with its tabloid-TV zooms and hokey visual metaphors, simply isn't up to such complexity."
‑ Kimberley Jones, Austin Chronicle
"Tells a fascinating story in an unwieldy way...a pity the structural flaws undermine its impact."
‑ Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion
"Notable for, if nothing else, introducing a Jewish character endowed with much of the same historical controversy as his German counterparts."
‑ Joseph Jon Lanthier, Slant Magazine
"Director Gaylen Ross assembles a fascinating look at this complex man and the still-smoldering argument about his legacy."
‑ Jonathan F. Richards,
"As an examination of what happens when events on the ground collide with national myth and a look at how disinclined complex reality is to fit into tidy boxes, it can't be beat."
‑ Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"Gaylen Ross's excellent documentary explores how a forgotten hero of the Holocaust became a political target in Israel."
‑ Clint O'Connor, Cleveland Plain Dealer
"A well-balanced and provocative documentary that's equally engaging, poignant and illuminating."
‑ Avi Offer, NYC Movie Guru
"An unbiased documentary sheds light on a Hungarian Jew who saved over 1600 Holocaust victims from the death camps by negotiating directly with Eichmann."
‑ Harvey S. Karten, Compuserve
"The very things that make Killing Kasztner maddening -- herky-jerky storytelling, heavy-handedness, doomy music, unearned moral certitude -- keep it moving right along."
‑ Mark Feeney, Boston Globe
"The film leaves you with a sense that Kastner's name is a casualty of rhetorical crossfire."
‑ Stephen Holden, New York Times
"The 2008 documentary "Killing Kasztner: The Jew Who Dealt with Nazis" is more the latter, and it arguably makes one wonder if there is such a thing as Holocaust minutiae."
‑ James Verniere, Boston Herald
"Absorbing untangling of how history judges choices made in extreme circumstances. Scrapes the scab off raw ethical, emotional and political perceptions of WWII heroism."
‑ Nora Lee Mandel,
More reviews for Killing Kasztner on Rotten Tomatoes