Best Movies by Farr

Occupied City

Occupied City Poster
Occupied City Poster





Occupied City

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What's it About

As one of our most beautiful cities, it’s hard to reconcile that Amsterdam experienced one of the most brutal and oppressive occupations of the Second World War, with most of the city’s Jewish residents wiped out. Collaborating with wife and partner Bianca Stigter, McQueen captures the city during the Co-vid lockdown with a very specific goal: every neighborhood, building or park he depicts was the location for something horrific or heroic that occurred during the Occupation. Narrator Hyams fills us in on just what happened in those places all those years ago.

Why we love it

McQueen’s bold experiment, which can viewed in two or more installments, hits the mark. First, this is McQueen and this is Amsterdam, so what we see on the screen consistently holds our interest. More important, every picture tells a hidden story. Drawing from his wife Stigter’s book and employing Hyams’ stripped-down narration, over four hours McQueen builds a catalogue of unthinkable cruelty, betrayal, and inhumanity. As we watch people enjoying their city, we wonder if they have any clue as to what happened right where they’re standing. Thanks to the haunting “Occupied City,” now a lot more people will know.

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