A very simple film with most of the scenes confined to a conference room, participated by dull men in uniform discussing technical details. Doesn't sound as interesting as an average Hollywood action film, and still far from a graphic accusation of evil. But the great irony is so manifest for any watcher with minimum historical knowledge.
At least three ironies should be honored. First, Heydrich (the biggest boss at the conference) speaks with such opimism and confidence, and with so much light projected at his face, one can mistake him for a hope for humanity without the help of subtitles and a German ear. He looks like a good superior willing to listen to his subordinates, a bright mind caring about the future of his nation, and a dutiful man following "good" orders.
Second, the greatest conflict in conference was between Heydrich and Dr. Stuckart (medium-high state government official and drafter of Nuremberg laws discriminating Jews): Stuckart objected sending half-Jews to concentration camps, not because he was empathetic to the "inferior race" but because it would cause chaos in administration among the "good" Aryans; and Heydrich condescendingly "conceded" to this "lenient" policy.
Third, when Kritzinger raised the question of the psychological consequence of turning "good" Aryans into bloody executioners, Heydrich ordered Eichmann to explain how Zyklon B and concentration camp is a "humane" way to get the job done without hurting the moral quality of the soldiers.
A perfect film for those interested in Nazi history, in how evil can be perpetrated in such a twisted way that it doesn't seem evil in the first place, and in the application of dark irony. I would play this film in high school and university history courses.
On January 20, 1942, high-ranking representatives of the German Nazi regime met in an idyllic villa on the Great Wannsee in the southwest of Berlin for a meeting that went down in history as the Wannsee Conference, because of its scope, fatality and consequences, perhaps the most terrible conference of human history. Present are 15 leading men of the SS, the NSDAP and the ministerial bureaucracy. They were invited by Reinhard Heydrich, head of the security police and SD, to a "meeting followed by breakfast". The exclusive topic of the approximately 90-minute discussion is what the National Socialists called the "Final Solution to the Jewish Question", which means the bureaucratically strictly planned organization of the systematic mass murder of millions of Jews from all over Europe. A fictionalized TV film on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the historical event, based on the minutes of the meeting
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