Ivan and Abraham

Director: Yolande Zauberman
Screenwriters: Yolande Zauberman

Institute History

  • 1994 Sundance Film Festival


A powerful first drama by documentarian Yolande Zauberrnan, Ivan and Abraham recreates a forgotten world—life in a Jewish shtetl in eastern Poland In the 1930s, before the black hole of the Holocaust. Shot in black and white in Yiddish. Russian. Polish and Romany. the film captures the breakup of countries and the collapse of coexisting cultures.

Using the simple story of two boys as a symbol of unprejudiced fiendishly. Ivan and Abraham reveals how bigotry buried the laughter of the Polish people and shrouded them in a veil of silence. Before the war, it was common for Christian families to board their sons with Jewish ones to learn a craft, so Ivan (twelve) lives with Abraham (nine). When their friendship is threatened. the boys run away Rachel. Abraham's sister, and her Communist boyfriend Aaron go after them.

Zauberman cast an unknown Gypsy from a 5t. Petersburg orphanage as Abraham, and his performance is mesmerizing. The little boy draws us into the blackness of his eyes, making us remember terror but also begging for tolerance Performances all around are tops, and Zauberman directs with devoted urgency.

Sunday Jan 23 3:30 pm
Park City Library Center

Saturday Jan 29 1:40 pm
Holiday Village Cinema III

Sunday Jan 30 2:20 pm
Holiday Village Cinema I


— Catherine Schulman

Screening Details

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