Shoah: Four Sisters (2018)
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The accumulation of detail, the sense of the range of outrages seen and experienced, is conveyed by allowing these women to truly sink into their narratives.
The approximately 270-minute running time becomes a hushed demand for the viewer to sit with historical cruelty and listen as its victims teach to the future, its effect a cumulative cry of warning for today.
Even without a lot of cuts for time, each story is perfectly paced, and filled with little details that big-picture histories tend to miss.
The installments... have a cumulative power. Their points of confluence - the deaths of family members, improbable escapes, the hardship of life in ghettos and camps - underscore the horror and, at times, the grim absurdity of surviving extermination.
Perhaps Four Sisters is best considered a parting gesture from Lanzmann, ensuring that, in his body of work at least, these four "sisters" should endure as more than just a footnote.
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