2022 Louisville Jewish Film Festival
Persian Lessons (Persischstunden)
Directed by Vadim Perelman
$12 / $8 Speed members
“Superbly acted.”—Cath Clarke, The Guardian
Maintaining a lie is all that may stand between life and death in this gripping multi-lingual tale of deception and intrigue set in World War II.
Giles, a young Belgian man, is arrested by the SS alongside other Jews and sent to a concentration camp in Germany. He narrowly avoids execution by swearing to the guards that he is not Jewish, but Persian.
This lie temporarily saves him, but Giles is assigned a seemingly untenable mission–to teach Persian to Koch, the officer in charge of the camp’s kitchen, who dreams of opening a restaurant in Iran once the war is over. Giles finds himself having to invent a language he doesn’t know, word by word.
As the unusual relationship between the two men begins to incite jealousy and suspicion, Gilles becomes acutely aware that one false move could expose his swindle. 2020, Germany/Russia/Belarus, DCP, in German, French, Italian, English, and Persian with English subtitles, 127 minutes. Recommended for 16+.
Co-presented with the 2022 Louisville Jewish Film Festival.