‘Persian Lessons’: Film Review
In “Schindler’s List,” most of the actors spoke English, using accents to indicate their characters’ origins.
In “Son of Saul,” the cast struggles to communicate in a mish-mosh of languages, as Jews of different nationalities were thrown together in Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Stories about the Holocaust — so vital in trying to reconcile the horrors of the past century — must at some point take a philosophical stand on how to deal with how their characters express themselves.And then there is “Persian Lessons,” a most peculiar anomaly among tales of the Shoah: It tells of a Belgian Jew who invented a language in order to survive World War II.
The film claims to be “inspired by a true story” but is really a parable in the tradition of “The Reader,” wherein a terrified prisoner (Nahuel Pérez Biscayart) agrees to teach Farsi — a language he does not know and is therefore obliged to
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