Perlasca: The Courage of a Just Man (2002)

TV Movie   |  Not Rated   |    |  Biography, Drama, History

Perlasca: The Courage of a Just Man (2002) Poster

It is the real story of Giorgio Perlasca (Luca Zingaretti). During the 1920s he was an Italian Fascist supporter, fighting in Africa an in the Spanish civil war where he deserved a safe ... See full summary »


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16 February 2015 | ma-cortes
| Moving biography about an Italian businessman changing name and posing as a Spanish Ambassador who helped save thousands of Hungarian Jews from Nazi persecution
Biopic movie about an Italian man named Giorgio Perlasca who along with the Spanish ambassador , Angel Sanz Briz , saved hundreds of Jews in Budapest . Giorgio Perlasca is the main subject of this 2002 television series "Perlasca: The Courage of a Just Man" , a man who once lived and did something most people were afraid to do or just didn't care as he saved many Hungarian Jews from concentration camps in 1944 . The real happenings being filmed on location in Hungary and powered by splendid acting . This is a staggering evocation of the Jew's saviour , Giorgio Perlasca , finds its voice in Luca Zingaretti . Giorgio Perlasca, an Italian veteran of the Spanish Civil War along with Angel Sanz Briz , a Spanish diplomatic who was sent to Budapest in 1942 carried out saving the lives of 5,200 Jews from the Holocaust by issuing them fake Spanish papers ; as Spain was neutral in the war , this made the difference between life and death for those Jews . In his new false assignment, Giorgio starts immediately to hide , shield and feed a lot of Jews issuing Spanish fake safe conducts for the Jews of Sephardic origin and all the Nazi as well as the Hungarian authorities believe him . When the Nazi occupied Hungary, in 1944 , instead to leave , he directed an original escape for multitude of Jews and was in contact with other heroes of that time , such as Raoul Wallenberg and , of course , Angel Sanz Briz . Perlasca together with other volunteers , running incredible risks had saved thousands of Hungarian Jews from a tragic death . Incredibly Perlasca succeeded to save Jews directly from the hands of Nazi authorities at the train station . By doing so he saved about 5000 to 6000 Jews lives at the end of the WWII , Bucarest , 1944 . This hero, after the war terminated in 1945 , was completely forgotten . A Tour-De-Force and labor of love for benefactors Giorgio Perlasca and Angel Sanz Briz who finally garnered the attention and respect they deserve . Perlasca inevitably became drawn to save Jewish as the man who turned an unlikely hero and saviour of a race not his own , being well performed by Luca Zingaretti , he is top-notch all the way throughout , only faltering in an out-of-character breakdown at the ending .

This exciting flick in ¨The Schindler's list¨ style contains intense drama , emotion , thrills , chills , violence , and ordinary Nazi brutalities . The German atrocities are depicted matter of factly as a by-product of sheer Nazi evil . The highlights of the movie are the thrilling as well as disturbing scenes happen on the train station as when Perlasca attempts to save a lot of Jewish and the brutal executions when the Jews are thrown by the river . Well shot on location in Budapest , due to the sensitive nature of the story . Excellent performances from main starring Luca Zingaretti who uses his powerful physique and intelligence as a protective buffer ; Elena Arvigo as Anna , she is watchable as a good Jewish , Marco Bonini , Amanda Sandrelli , Stefania Sandrelli's daughter, and special apparition of Mathilda May as Contessa Eleonora . And brief appearance by Tamás Puskás as infamous Nazi chief Adolf Eichmann who personifies perfectly evil . Evocative as well as colorful cinematography by Stefano Ricciotti . Impressive as well as sensitive musical score by the great Ennio Morricone in his usual style . In the picture appears historical characters who had an important role on the sad deeds such as Raoul Wallemberg , a Swedish diplomat who also saved thousands of Jews and disappeared when Stalin's troops entered in Hungary ; Angel Sanz Briz though when the Red Army approached Budapest he was ordered to leave for Switzerland ; and , of course , Adolf Eichmann in charge of Jewish transport trains .

This stirring TV picture compellingly directed by Alberto Negrin was based on real events , these are the followings : Hungary chose the side of the Axis , until Horthy , the dictator sought for contact with the Allies in 1944 though power of the Third Reich was falling at that time . Miklos Horthy is the Hungarian ruler Admiral , Hitler then supported the collaborating Szalasy who took power over Hungary . Later on , the Arrow Cross Party takes control to carry out politics about Jews extermination , including their transport to concentration camps . They immediately introduced a severe Jewish prosecution and elimination . There appears Giorgo Perlasca ; during the 1920s he was an Italian Fascist supporter, fighting in Africa an in the Spanish civil war where he deserved a safe conduct for Spanish embassies . After some years, disillusioned by fascism, he is a fresh supplier for the Italian army. When the Nazi occupied Hungary, in 1944, instead to leave he escaped to the Spanish embassy in Budapest using his old safe conduct and becoming a Spanish citizen , changing name into Jorge Perlasca . When Angel Sanz Briz , the Spanish consul, is removed, Perlasca immediately substitutes him , like if he was officially appointed from Spanish authorities . After that time Perlasca continued his labor with fake documents , posing as the Spanish Ambassador after Spain closed down their embassy . Later on , he achieved to save thousands of Jews from martyrdom and massacres . He was subsequently recognized by the Holocaust Museum Yad Vashem of Israel, and gave his heirs the title of Righteous Among the Nations . And recently the Hungarian government gave him the Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary.

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Release Date:

28 January 2002



Country of Origin

Italy, France, Sweden, Hungary

Filming Locations

Budapest, Hungary

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