Hiding and Seeking: Faith and Tolerance After the Holocaust
United States | 86 mins | English, Polish, w/Eng. subtitles
HIDING AND SEEKING is a profound and deeply personal post-Holocaust story of broken promises and an attempt to heal the wounds of the past. Daum and his wife Rivka undertake a journey to Poland with their sons, both of whom are married orthodox yeshiva students living in Jerusalem. The Daums are seeking traces of their family's history, including the Polish family who hid Rivka's father during WWII. Daum is proud of the religious traditions that his grandchildren are inheriting, but is also disturbed by the insularity of his sons' religious practice. Directors Daum and Rudavsky, who made the critically acclaimed A LIFE APART: HASIDISM IN AMERICA, remarked, “A LIFE APART was our attempt to humanize Haredim (ultra-Orthodox Jews) for outsiders. HIDING AND SEEKING is our attempt to humanize outsiders to the Haredim.” At the beginning of this film, Daum challenges his sons to reconsider their limited world view, which has no place for outsiders who do not share their beliefs. Daum wants them to use Torah study as a means of connecting to all people. When he asks his sons Tzvi Dovid and Akiva to accompany him to Poland, they are skeptical about going on Dad's roots tour. Throughout the trip, Daum and his sons spar good-naturedly about Daum's homegrown humanism and even about the purpose of the film. But when they meet the Mucha family (who hid Rivka's father), the sons' view of non-Jews shifts from disinterest to acknowledgement of the humanity and courage of the Muchas. This astute and masterful documentary explores post-Holocaust questions of faith and a father's hope for a more tolerant world.