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Elusive Justice: The Search for Nazi War Criminals

4.4 out of 5 stars 84 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

An unprecedented PBS documentary exploring the 65-year effort to identify, prosecute and punish the 20th Century's most notorious murderers. In the face of apathy, obstruction and violence, the men and women who pursued Nazi fugitives not only brought a measure of dignity to the victims of the Holocaust, they also reminded the international community that enemies of humanity must be punished - if humanity is to survive.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Directors: Jonathan Silvers
  • Producers: Jonathan Silvers
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG-13
    Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • Studio: PBS
  • DVD Release Date: December 13, 2011
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (84 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005T5OCQE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #141,709 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By E. Bukowsky HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 4, 2011
Format: DVD
Countless books, films, and television programs have described the genocide perpetrated by the Nazis during the Second World War, when millions of men, women, and children were shot, hanged, buried alive, burned to death, starved, experimented upon, and gassed throughout Europe. We have all seen horrifying footage of emaciated and disease-ridden victims and photographs of smug German soldiers who took part in the Final Solution. In addition, a great deal has been written about what happened to the Nazis after the war. Did they pay for their transgressions?

Although approximately one thousand Nazi officials were convicted of crimes against humanity during the Nuremberg Trials, hundreds of thousands of perpetrators escaped and went on to live normal lives. They held jobs, ran businesses, raised families, and in some cases, lived to a ripe old age. Some are still alive today. "Elusive Justice" is an eye-opening documentary, written and directed by Jonathan Silvers and expertly narrated by Candice Bergen. Silvers shot footage in eight countries over three years, in which he exposes the shameful truth about the reluctance of the Allies to capture and punish those who committed crimes against humanity.

How can this be? We learn from commentary by historians, Holocaust survivors, attorneys, politicians, and military officials that: 1) The Allies were more interested in fighting communists than they were in prosecuting Nazis, some of whom had scientific knowledge that Americans needed. 2) Members of the clergy helped Nazis escape to South America with forged American Red Cross passports. 3) The Argentinean government provided a safe haven to Nazis, who gladly taught the dictators brutal techniques of imprisonment and torture.
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I am amazed at how fast people forget about the horror's of war and let these monsters go free. It almost makes us guilty of genocide, because in a way we are condoning it by letting these people go.
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An excellent look at the dilemma of placing expediency over principle. America has literally scoured post-war Europe for anti-communist experts, many of whom turned out to be war criminals. The CIA provided cover and in some cases even falsified documentation of the former Nazis in order to maintain superiority over the Soviet Union. The consequence was a discord and divergence of mission between the intelligence agencies, the State Department, and Justice, all working to the detriment of the national fabric. We are still paying the price today.
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The implications raised by this account of how the world managed the Nazi question after WWII are chilling. 21st century political and cultural events in Germany and France are clearer after viewing as is much about the good ole USA. Everyone should see this film, narrated nearly perfectly by Candice Bergen, about the Nazis, their genocide of Jews and how they (the Nazi's) became our next door neighbors not inmates of the prison or visitors to the gallows down the road. I'd have given it 5 stars if there was more explanation for the materials presented - why? - kept coming to mind. Perhaps there is no answer.
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It does not surprise me that the Vatican aided the escape of Nazis out of Europe after the War. My father ( long gone now) who was part of the American Forces who entered Rome after the Nazi defeat, spoke of documentation that the Americans recovered of Vatican complicity with the Germans during the War. This documentary only begins to hilight justice eluded by so many others!
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The story never gets old... The guilty will always have folks looking for them. Good refresher on a dark part of world history. I would recommend to history classes that seem to think the war ended in Europe with the surrender of the third Reich. It did not really end till years later.
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Excellent quick look at the disappointing lack of consequences for those who perpetrated the mass murders on the part of the Nazi regime. The record of the governments after the war in regards to living up to the promises of the allies to bring to justice those who were responsible for atrocities after WW2 was a sad, pathetic story of political expediency winning over justice. This movie gives a sense of that though it really only scratches the surface.
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This story left me hanging. I mean it documents the seeking of nazi war criminals but while interesting it never grabbed me. Still it is interesting to watch given that the history of this is fast fading.
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