Rarely do I tout movies here, mainly because I am not a huge movie watcher, but occasionally I come across something that really stuns me, and this documentary is one of those stunners.
This is an absolutely spellbinding documentary about a guy from NYC who went cave-exploring in Western Ukraine and deep within a cave, found remnants of people’s lives… which started his quest to find out who had lived there and why, and what he found ended up being an utterly astonishing and rather epic tale of the survival of several Jewish families. Far from being maudlin or depressing or sensational, this film is fascinating and uplifting and even joyous. Seeing 90-year old men donning spelunking gear and going down into the cave 70 years later is truly something to see.
The website is great too. Apparently Esther’s original manuscript exists and is in a museum. Also, in yet another strange and remarkable twist, on THE DAY the survivors landed in Ukraine to “thank the caves,” the Chilean miners who had been trapped underground for 67 days were finally brought to the surface. There’s a little short video on the website which documents their reaction.
The film is not long, about 80 minutes. It is available for rent for $3 on amazon prime.