Steal a Pencil for Me | Chicago Reader

Steal a Pencil for Me

The love that sustained two Dutch Jews through the Holocaust is the subject of this documentary by Michele Ohayon. Jack Polak and Ina Soep met in 1943, when he was unhappily married to another woman; a month later he and his tempestuous wife were deported to the Westerbork transit camp, soon to be followed by Ina. The film doesn't gloss over the survivors' horrific experiences in Westerbork and Bergen-Belsen (Jack admits he denied his fading sister his last piece of bread), but although their love is undeniably a blessing, I was disconcerted watching the elderly couple smile and chuckle today as they recall their daily letters and secret meetings in the midst of such wide-scale death. Ohayon combines interviews and archival footage with reenactments (some incongruously featuring a modern telephone booth). In English and subtitled Dutch, German, and Hebrew. 94 min.

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