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This is the story of the champion women swimmers of the legendary Jewish sports club, Hakoah Vienna. Founded in 1909 in response to the notorious Aryan Paragraph, which forbade Austrian sports clubs from accepting Jewish athletes, Hakoah rapidly grew into one of Europe's biggest athletic clubs, with its members achieving astonishing success in many diverse sports. In the 1930s Hakoah's best-known triumphs came from its women swimmers, who dominated national competitions in Austria. After the Anschluss in 1938, the Nazis shut down the club, but the swimmers all managed to flee the… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Zilberman's storytelling is a little jumpy, but his documentary is a fitting tribute to seven women whose strength of mind and character, as much as their physical prowess, was developed by the organization that ensured their survival."
‑ Susan Walker, Toronto Star
"What a delightful group they are -- sharp, witty, chic survivors who forged new lives and successful careers in new countries."
‑ Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times
"Surprisingly complex and moving, Yaron Silberman's vibrantly nostalgic documentary succeeds because it is about more than its surface subjects, young Jewish women who were champion swimmers in the 1930s whose lives were interrupted by the war."
‑ Urban Cinefile Critics, Urban Cinefile
"It is a treat to encounter the fierce, brave, learned women of Watermarks."
‑ Liz Braun, Jam! Movies
"Not a great movie, but contains fascinating historical material."
‑ David Sterritt, Christian Science Monitor
"Modest, moving and intelligently assembled."
‑ Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail
"Not especially lively filmmaking, but Zilberman has unearthed some terrific footage of the club in its heyday."
‑ Ella Taylor, L.A. Weekly
"The film's real power comes from the women's personalities."
‑ Robert W. Butler, Kansas City Star
"The film's denouement is one of triumphant symbolism as the women return to Vienna for a swim in their former pool. There are no medals given for this reunion, but it's definitely one that deserves a cheer."
‑ Laura Kelly, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
"Hugely entertaining and wonderfully warm documentary."
‑ Ken Fox, TV Guide's Movie Guide
"His film, both reverent and affectionate, has at its heart a story that richly deserves the telling."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"A touching film, providing a glimpse into yet another hidden story about the history of European Jews before the arrival of the Nazis."
‑ Marta Barber, Miami Herald
"That the film is watchable is largely due to the women, any of whom could have been the subject of a better, considerably more focused film."
‑ Jeff Vice, Deseret News, Salt Lake City
"One of the most amazing aspects of this film is how many of the octogenarian-plus swimmers have survived after first fleeing post-Anschluss Austria for the four corners of the world."
‑ James Verniere, Boston Herald
"Moving documentary."
‑ , E! Online
More reviews for Watermarks on Rotten Tomatoes