Conspiracy

Conspiracy is a film that is well worth watching. It is a depiction of the Wannsee Conference of 1942 when Reinhardt Heidrich gathered the top bureaucrats of Nazi Germany together to decide how to settle the “Jewish Question.”

It is a brilliant film. Too brilliant.

Anyone who has ever sat through a committee or board meeting can identify with the characters and therein lies the problem. For the sake of conflict, for dramatic tension, a line is drawn between the Good Anti-Semites and the Bad Anti-Semites. And the acting is so incredibly good, so believable, that one forgets that no one shown in that film was a saint. The character of Major Langer, for example, is a civilized man, unhappy with his task of shooting every Jew he can find in Latvia. The real Major Langer was a bloodthirsty butcher who enjoyed his work.

The portrayal of Heidrich by the always amazing Kenneth Branaugh is chillingly attractive. He is the super-competant organizer who cuts through the Gordian Knot with a single stroke. Charismatic, brilliant. And in many ways accurate for the real Heidrich was all of the above. But one becomes drawn into his spell and at a certain point near the end of the film one must actually shake ones head to clear the cobwebs and remember what they were discussing.

It is the portrayal of Eichmann that is closest to reality. A man who toadies to his superior Heidrich (who obviously views him with disdain) he bullies all who are underneath him.

A fascinating film in which odious human beings are, well, human. It is one you need to see.

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