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MONUMENT is a new feature-length documentary about memory, memorialization, and meaning.  It tells the story of the Holocaust memorial that my grandmother, a survivor of Auschwitz, built in her hometown in Hungary at the end of her life–– and of my pilgrimage to see it for the first time as a new father, scared of the future that my daughter will be growing up in. 

The film creates a space in which we can explore the questions that we as Americans are asking right now about public space and memorialization: whose story does a monument tell?  Whose does it leave out?  How do we pass on the parts of our history that we would rather forget? How do we process generational grief?

Bringing these questions to an intimate family story in Hungary removes the preconceptions and biases that many viewers may have going into a conversation on this topic.  We learn that while monuments have the illusion of permanence, they are as fragile and complicated as the people that created them.  If past trauma remains unacknowledged, it will continue to fester like an infected wound until it is reopened and healed.  Monuments are never permanent, no matter how many lifetimes they occupy a place, and some are as fleeting as a few weeks, gathered in front of a store. But they all ask us to reckon with the past.

We’re living through a historic time when real connection is needed more than ever, across political and racial divides, that reminds us of what is universal about being human.  By studying the memorialization of the Holocaust, we can learn how to publicly grieve, and begin to heal.  And like her memorial, which took so much will and love and grief to materialize, this film will be a monument to her effort to create a safer world for her grandchildren.

Monument is currently in production, and is on schedule to be completed by June of 2022.  Your donation is tax-deductible thanks to our fiscal sponsor, From The Heart Productions.  Thank you so much for your support. 

 

Creative Team:

Michael Turner  Director, Editor, DP, Co-Producer, Co-Writer

Alyssa Burgé  Co-Producer, Co-Writer

Bill Roberts  Original Score

Jon Betz  Consulting Producer

 

Questions?  reallightfilms@gmail.com 

 

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Yes, we are a fiscally sponsored project of From The Heart Productions, which is a public 501c3 organization recognized by the IRS. Your donation is tax-deductible to the fullest extent permissible by law.

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