21 October 2014 | Rodrigo_Amaro
Lies for lies, and who gets the truth?
If only the person behind the movie wasn't so critical...I mean, he'd be more interesting to follow than many filmmakers out there, who provides gripping stories loaded with controversial information, and behind all that makes an extensive and careful research to prove his facts. If only...But behind this strange piece, is someone who has all the good winds on his side but decides to set sail against the current and that can only cause a shipwreck. Eric Hunt's idea is a matter for debate, and a quite valid one, had he stayed objective to one point and one point only: to debunk all the misleading and false information presented in the documentary "The Last Days" (1998). No, along the way he has to sink so low to the point of using of irony, an almost hidden racism and antisemitism during his fact check, and worst of all, the path less traveled by, he denies the Holocaust - and that alone takes away all the credit he was getting by pinpointing with precision the "lies" behind the Oscar winning documentary. In the end, we get another rant by a mad YouTubber.
Bear in mind I watched this without knowing who was behind the movie (you can imagine the shock afterwards) and without seeing the other documentary (which amazes me is the fact that, forget about the lies, but more important, the fact that "The Last Days" didn't get any award besides the Oscar, so it must have won due to sympathy to the cause because "Regret to Inform" would be considered the real favorite to win that year with his stream of other awards won). In any case, it feels like watching two movies at the same time - no, three because Hunt insists on uncovering more falsehood in another documentary, "Liberators: Fighting in Two Fronts of WWII" (1992), proved to be complete false and withdrawn from view.
Now the movie: the man has talent to show and to prove, knows how to edit and how to expose the horrid, bizarre and unsubstantial stories presented by Holocaust survivors, Black WWII veterans and others, who gave their testimonies in "The Last Days" and also at the Shoah Foundation, created by Spielberg as a Holocaust memorial filled with interviews from Jewish survivors and others who lived that period. What Hunt gets right: in showing that some of the people interviewed for the Shoah project talk about things that are hard to prove, or are sheer lies, and Hunt's examination is very strong. Survivor Irene Zisblatt's story is a clear example. The Auschwitz tattoo perfectly removed, the saved diamonds, the meeting with Mengele, it's just too much to handle. There's more, but if only the director would stick to saying "some of the interviewed are lying" and that's why that documentary is a shameful scheme instead of later on focusing on "the myths of the Holocaust" or "Blacks soldiers never got near to concentration camps to save the Jewish". Attacking Spielberg and the film he produced is one thing; but counter-proof and deny a major fact of History is another serious thing and it's just idiotic.
The ship reaches the bottom of the ocean when the director uses of Hitler's words in Mein Kampf to present the true nature of the Jewish people. That alone just sets the basic of what's the real intentions of this film's creator and it's a lot more than to trash an award winning film. Hunt knows how to put the pieces together, manages to make a balanced gathering of information that makes you think - the apparently random sequence involving the U.S. hearings on the Kuwait situation that led to the Gulf War is very interesting - but it all evaporates when his remarks gets ironic, darkly playful and when his speech is deeply analyzed.
If the idea is to make me wary of "The Last Days" then mission accomplished. There's plenty of absurd in there, and I think that the Shoah Foundation at the time should have made a better research on the people they found, some of those folks probably haven't reached any other notoriety in their lives that they had to feel a little important by saying they testified unspeakable and unconceivable horrors (lampshades made of human skin?) when in fact they did not. Besides that, "The Last Days of the Big Lie" is purely outrageous and not much of good cinema. And like the other film, it's packed with lies. 4/10