He negotiated the escape of 1,700 Jews from Nazi-occupied Hungary, and years later worked for the Israeli government and was an active member in the Mapai party. Yet Rezso Kasztner was accused of being a Nazi collaborator and assassinated.
The documentary, “Killing Kasztner: The Man Who Dealt with Nazis,” explores Kasztner’s life through interviews with his family and his assassin. A screening of the film, hosted by Cal State Northridge’s Jewish Studies Program, will take place Sunday, Jan. 10, at 10 a.m. in the Fallbrook Laemmle Theatre. The theatre is located at 6731 Fallbrook Ave. in West Hills.
American director Gaylen Ross documents the life of a man whose trial and verdict divided Israel during the 1950s. Kasztner was labeled as “the man who sold his soul to the devil” and was assassinated in Tel Aviv in 1957.
“The vivid documentary focuses on the Israeli political life during the 1950s,” says Jody Myers, professor and coordinator of CSUN’s Jewish Studies Program. “It shows the deep divisions in the new state over the current and past policies of Israeli Prime Minister David Ben Gurion.”
Myers emphasized that movie goers should not expect to see a film about Nazis or the Holocaust.
“It’s more about the after-effects of the Holocaust. It’s a controversial film and even to this day there are passionate voices accusing Kasztner and Ben Gurion of betrayal through the act of saving nearly 2,000 Jews,” she said.
The screening of the film will be followed by a Q & A session with Jewish Studies faculty.
The event is being co-sponsored by the Adat Ari El, Temple Ahavat Shalom, Temple Aliyah, Temple Kol Tikvah, Shomrei Torah Synagogue, and Valley Beth Shalom.
The event will be open to the public. RSVPs are required. If you belong to one of the co-sponsoring synagogues please indicate that when you make your reservation. As per a new policy, only two seats per RSVP. To RSVP, call at (818) 677-4724 or e-mail at email@example.com.