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Customer Review

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film well worth seeing!, 6 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: The Counterfeiters [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
This film is excellent, in my opinion, in that it is not a formulaic, trite, run-of-the-mill narrative. The Counterfeiters is the true story of the largest counterfeiting operation in history, set up by the Nazis in 1936. It is based on actual, historic events, known as "Operation Bernhard", although these are somewhat fictionalised. The film script is based on a book, written by one of the survivors of the expert team of forgers in Sachsenhausen concentration camp. I was very swiftly drawn into the narrative, and I actually CARED about the main characters, cared about what happened to them.

This story deals with a number of complex, moral dilemmas. The "anti-hero" of the narrative, master counterfeiter Salomon 'Sali' Sorowitsch, a non-observant, non-religious Jew without moral scruples, changes as the story wears on. His perspective, which is initially a self-serving one, alters and develops as he forms a bond with certain fellow forgers, and he finds himself trapped in a major moral dilemma.

There are some amusing incidents, e.g., when we are made aware of the obvious contempt a German Jewish banker, one of the large team of inmates involved in this extensive Nazi scam, feels for Sali, who is a despicable, professional criminal. (These were made to wear a green triangle stitched to their camp apparel, so everyone knows instantly that here is a convicted criminal who has served time in prison. Sali's green triangle is superimposed on a yellow triangle, forming a Star of David, announcing that he is a Jewish criminal.) There was clearly a very strict, informal hierarchy among the Jewish concentration camp inmates.

The choice of Karl Markovics to play the part of Sali is an excellent one as he is quite convincing as the cynical, taciturn, initially selfish Sali. He really does look the part and his acting is superb.
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