Jojo Rabbit dir. Taika Waititi (2019) Director Taika Waititi walks a fine line between flippancy and dark absurdism, concocting from the final days of Nazi Germany a tragicomic yet rather moving story of childhood innocence and fanatical indoctrination. Outrageously over-the-top but kept in check by some nuanced acting.
When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit by Judith Kerr (William Collins, 1971) Nine-year-old Anna and her family are refugees from Nazi Germany. The child’s perspective is uplifting and uncomplicated but—as with many mostly autobiographical accounts—the authenticity that is so valuable precludes the story from having the (manipulative) clout of a straight-out novel.
SS-GB, Series 1 created by Len Deighton (BBC, 2017) In the alternative history of 1941, England is occupied by Nazi Germany. Though nominally independent, Scotland Yard detective Douglas Archer must reconcile his place working for the oppressors. A realistically conceived historical drama that plays to its strengths, unconstrained by audience expectations.
Wagner & Me by Stephen Fry (BBC, 2010) Truthfully titled, this documentary is perhaps too much about Fry’s passion for Wagner’s music, too little about the more historically significant equating of Wagner with Nazi Germany, and the extent to which Wagner’s powerfully operatic Gesamtkunstwerks may have informed Hitler’s nightmarish fantasy.