Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)

  |  Documentary

Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015) Poster

A documentary about the life and work of Hannah Arendt, the prolific and unclassifiable thinker, political theorist, moral philosopher and polemicist, and with her encounter with the trial of Eichmann a high ranking Nazi.




  • Hannah Arendt in Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)
  • Hannah Arendt in Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)
  • Hannah Arendt in Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)
  • Hannah Arendt in Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)
  • Hannah Arendt in Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)
  • Hannah Arendt in Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt (2015)

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User Reviews

23 January 2017 | signornoir
| A great piece on Arendt's life and especially work.
Great watch. I am not so sure about the fiction movie about Arendt but I have ordered it and will have a chance to make up my mind. At the light of today's world, Arendt's work has something of prophetical, and even if not reassuring it hits bull's eye in so many assertions.

In this brilliant documentary you can learn more about the central pieces of Arendt's work and the reception of the coining of phrases such as the banality of evil. It's also your chance, as our philology master Nietzsche would advise us, to get close and personal with the source and the context where these words were written and voiced out into collective intelligence. It will help you to gain the strength to really understand that Arendt's evil category is everything but banal and that it's banality is solely rooted upon the unawareness of other's pain. An involuntary, silent and unnoticed sadism lost in the webs of political corruption, totalitarianism and bureaucracy.

Besides a beautiful elipse work between footage from the past which adds true drama to the story, edited together with bits and pieces of Arendt's famous radio and TV interviews (where are these prime time intellectual TV shows now?); the documentary excels at a synthetic but emotional sum up of the Arendt's life more important episodes and people (Heidegger, Jaspers).

The main character, thought, is Arendt's contributions and philosophical activity. Her legacy is immense and contemporary. Her view of the human condition and events, even seen at the light of our reality today, are spot on and for many she overcame her masters, making way to a new way of reflection, unworn by time and progress.

For sure it sheds a great light often to her work here, namely the categories of evil, the infamous banality of evil; thinking as a dangerous act/non-thinking as the most dangerous, inhuman act; the refugees status and their loss of human rights supported only while under the guarantee of a nation which refugees just lost; plurality; a handful of deep, actual and serious matter of study.

In the meanwhile if you know her work, you must watch this film. If you don't, that necessity is even more pressing considering you are into contemporary Philosophy. Our dear Hannah Arendt is one of the most, if not the most brilliant voices of the twentieth century.

A word for Ada Ushpiz (director/writer, Israel) and her crew for the good taste, deep approach and beautiful mounted film with great interviews with both the supporters and the detractors of Arendt's body of work.

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Release Date:

17 June 2016


English, German, Hebrew, French

Country of Origin

Israel, Canada, Germany

Filming Locations


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,244 10 April 2016

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:


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