In the movie "Life Is Beautiful", a Jewish man and his family are put into a concentration camp during the Holocaust. The movie gives an inside look at the horrors the Jews were faced with during the Holocaust. "Life Is Beautiful" should be incorporated into a unit on the Holocaust in schools because it shows everything the Jews were faced with, it handles expressing the horrors of the Holocaust without being too graphic, and it would help students get a more personal feeling of what happened to the Jews. "Life Is Beautiful" gives the audience a vivid look into what happened during the Holocaust.
Roberto Benigni plays a very upbeat, carefree bookstore owner. His wife, who is not Jewish, and his son are forced into a concentration camp. They are deported on a train with many other Jews. From the point the get to the camp, Benigni shows the audience what it was like for the Jews. During selection, his wife is separated from him and his son, along with his uncle. The movie shows the Jews working where there are hot furnaces having to haul around heavy objects all day.
It also shows the German's being cruel in a verbal way to the Jews. At one point in the movie, Benigni returns late to his bunk where his son is waiting. Another man in the bunk informs Benigni that everyone was nervous he would not return. This shows the fear that the Jews had to live with every day while they were contained in the concentration camps.
This would be good to show students so that they can get a better understand of what went on in concentration camps on a daily basis. Even though the movie shows the concentration camps and the horrors that the Jews experienced, it does it in a way that would be appealing to all audiences. It isn't too graphic that some students would not enjoy the movie. Benigni never shows anyone in the concentration camps being beaten, but makes it clear that it happens by word of mouth of the prisoners. He incorporates the crematory and makes it sound like a horrible place, but never shows anyone being put into the furnace. This way, the audience can be aware that the crematory was a horror, but never have to actually witness it first-hand.
This would make it so that all audiences can watch the movie and still get the full effect of what went on in the concentration camps. "Life Is Beautiful" shows one family's experience in the concentration camp. Benigni makes the audience fall in love with the main character in the beginning by letting them see the way his life was and how truly happy he was. He shows him falling in love with a Christian woman and having an upbeat, curious little boy. By doing this, the audience experiences the sadness that the characters felt in the movie when they are separated. The audience feels sad when his Christian wife is separated from her family even though she wasn't supposed to be at the camp in the first place.
They also feel fear when his son has to hide every day from the Jews so that he won't be taken to the furnace. At the end of the movie, when Benigni is killed for being where he is not supposed to be, the audience is saddened because throughout the movie, they have fallen in love with this positive, upbeat dad who would do anything to protect his son. This would make the movie good to show to students because it gives them a more personal feeling of what occurred during the Holocaust. This way, they can understand better how painful and upsetting it truly was. "Life Is Beautiful" should be incorporated into a unit on the Holocaust. Benigni does a great job of showing what really occurred during the Holocaust.
Students would be able to see the horrors the Jews encountered during the Holocaust, it would be appealing to all audiences, and it would give a personal view of one single family that was torn apart due to the Germans and the concentration camps.