Son of Saul (2015)

Original Title

Saul fia


Drama, War


László Nemes




Géza Röhrig, Levente Molnár, Urs Rechn, Sándor Zsótér, Todd Charmont, Christian Harting, Kamil Dobrowolski, Attila Fritz, Tamás Polgár


It follows two days in the life of Saul Auslander (Géza Röhrig), a Hungarian prisoner at Auschwitz who tries to save from the flames the body of a boy he takes for his son.


There are a lot of movies about the Holocaust and I was expecting Son of Saul to be just that, another Holocaust movie. Thank goodness it wasn't just that, but also a powerful and haunting film about what it means to be human.

Son of Saul is the story of a man who has lost his humanity, just like everyone else in his condition. However, this man commits himself to do something that is beyond insane, rescuing a dead boy that might be or might be not his son, so to regain some of that humanity and morality. At some points though, I really questioned his mission and his sanity as he put at risk the lives of many others in order to do what he thought was the right thing to do. And his journey is a little too repetitive.

Also, there was something missing. I believe that in order to be more effective the story needed an antagonist. Not the Nazis in general, but a single man with a personality that created some "real" conflict with Saul. The problem is that all the character, both prisoners and Nazis, are pretty bland.

Other than that, the film is almost spotless. Nemes did a fantastic job capturing the horrors of the Holocaust such as the inhumane conditions and the constant struggles, and he succeeded in what he tried to do, show that there are no Holocaust survivors. He could have been a little more accurate with the real conditions of the prisoners though because they were thinner, weaker, their clothes sure weren't that good, and a lot of them were starving and sick.

Moving on, there's still one aspect of the movie I haven't mentioned, the best one, in my opinion, the cinematography. The film is shot from an over-the-shoulder perspective that keeps you focused on Saul all the time. We never get the big picture, we only see glimpses of what was going on in the camp, and I think that's the film's greatest strength because it allows it to fully focus on Saul's hopeless mission.


  1. Cara Sonia, dalla breve trama si direbbe che è un film interessante.
    Ciao e buona serata con un forte abbraccio e un sorriso:-)

  2. Saul was almost the antagonist to me. He put all of the other Commando's lives at risk for what he did. That bothered me so much.

  3. I don't think I will see this film because I don't like that type of camera work to be honest and he actually sounds irritating. I understand the reasoning because he went a little "crazy" so he must do this regardless of whom he may place in danger but it is just too heavy for me right now. (Reminds me of my grandmother who just kept re-washing her little boy's clothes, ironing them and putting them away only to repeat the process. My uncle died at 14 months from a bombing and he was in my grandmother's arms)

  4. This one just didn't do it for me. It felt completely nonsensical that he would go off on this quest, putting himself and so many others at further risk for an already dead child that, as I understood it, was definitely not his son (the title referring to his impromptu adoption of the body). I get all the horrors of The Holocaust, but I think it's been done better in dozens, if not hundreds, of films. In this case, Saul feels like a guy trying to be a hero simply for the sake of being a hero and that was off-putting to me.