Release date:January 12, 2007
Studio:First Run Features
Directors:Rolf Bickel, Dietrich Wagner
This film is an unparalleled document on the first Auschwitz trial, which took place shortly after the Eichmann trial in Jerusalem. The filmmakers use excerpts from 430 hours of original audiotapes of the trial and reflect on the investigation, the trial procedures and the verdict in one of the most important trials in German history. The court heard 360 witnesses from 19 countries, including 211 Auschwitz survivors, in proceedings against 22 people accused of taking part in the mass murder of millions. In the courtroom, survivors of Auschwitz confronted perpetrators they had not seen for twenty years, many of whom had made comfortable lives for themselves in postwar West Germany. On August 20, 1965, after 20 months of proceedings, the verdict was pronounced in one of the most significant trials in German legal history.