"Defiant Requiem" Preserves Another Piece of the World's Musical Beauty Review

Music can be a very effective and powerful form of therapy. The beauty in a piece of music can fill one with raw emotions rarely felt by other art forms. The documentary Defiant Requiem explores the use of music and its meaningful purpose in a time where hope ran low and survival was everyone’s main objective: the Holocaust.

Defiant Requiem details the events at Terezin, a concentration camp in Praque where many unfortunate Jewish prisoners were kept. Rafael Schächter was one such individual, a Czech opera-coral conductor who was held there, mistreated and abused like everyone else until he found an unused piano in a cellar and decided to play and teach other prisoners to sing the “Verdi Requiem”. This piece of music was eventually performed in front of high ranking Nazi officers and was a demonstration of hope and courage set against a backdrop of evil.

Documentaries like Defiant Requiem are essential in the recording and education of significant historical events. The Holocaust was a time where the world saw the worst of humanity. This documentary shows the very best. The interviews of survivors and the filmmakers have painted a fascinating picture here, one that that sheds light on a very dark time period. Rafael Schächter was a hero and his fellow prisoners knew it. The beauty of music was their weapon against the Nazis and what a weapon it was. If you care to learn a little bit more about history and gain a better understanding of the mentality of the Jewish prisoners, then Defiant Requiem is a documentary definitely worth checking out.

DVD Bonus Features

Unfortunately, there are no bonus features for Defiant Requiem.

"Defiant Requiem" is on sale July 23, 2013 and is not rated. Documentary. Written and directed by Doug Shultz. Starring Bebe Neuwirth.

Randall Unger • Staff Writer

A product of the 1980s, his first cinematic experience was seeing Ghostbusters II with his parents at the tender age of 4. His favorite movies include the Back to the Future TrilogyJurassic Park, Batman and Glengarry Glen Ross. Tom Hanks is his idol and his second home is Comic Con.


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