My Mom's First Olympics and Liebe Perla | Chicago Reader

My Mom's First Olympics and Liebe Perla

Two Israeli documentaries. Shahar Rozen's video Liebe Perla (1999, 63 min.) documents the friendship between Perla, an Israeli dwarf who is sole survivor of a family subjected to Josef Mengele's brutal experiments, and a German woman trying to locate a film of Perla's naked family that Mengele made at Auschwitz. This meditation on Nazism and generosity often surprises: asserting that she “can't say anything bad about Mengele,” Perla recalls how visits to her family seemed to cheer him. Director Shahar Rozen frames the two very short friends to give them almost heroic stature. In German and Hebrew with subtitles. Ran Carmeli's slow-paced, affectionate My Mom's First Olympics (1997, 53 min.) documents his mom's participation in lawn bowling for the visually impaired in Atlanta; it's inspiring how accurately these competitors can roll the ball. In Hebrew with subtitles.

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