Review of the projection at the European Parliament

The Film: “The Consul of Bordeaux” was shown at the European Parliament, Brussels, on 17 March 2014, to about two-hundred [217] invited guests. The cabinet from the Belgian Prime Minister was also represented.

Following the screening, a questions and answer (Moderator, Henri Benkoski) session took place with the co-directors, Joao Correa (author of the original story) and Francisco Manso,  special Guests Grandsons of The Consul Gerald Mendes and Marc Daout , Baron Ludo de Vleeschauwer, Nuno Wahnon from B’nai B’rith- Europe and International and the support of the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation.

Introduction by Minister Richard Miller, in presence of E.P. MPs .

This true story is about how the Portuguese Consul in Bordeaux in 1941 saved 30,000 people, nearly all Jews, from the advancing Nazis in spite of hostility of Portuguese government, whose wrath, the Consul, Aristides de Sousa Mendes was all to aware and expecting. Much has already been said about this fast paced film, with its tension and suspense, but seldom is anything said about it witty dialogue. The film’s hero Sousa Mendes has a biting sense of humor, full of irony but also perception. He uses his humor as a weapon to defend himself and those around him from the institutional indifference and cruelty of 1941 Europe.

The question and answer session lasted a full hour. The audience learned how the film was made and about the real life of Sousa Mendes and those he saved. Indeed, this is a film that opens up the curiosity of viewer and forces him or her to ask moral questions about life and how to deal with dangerous situations from an ethical point of view. “The Consul of Bordeaux” is a film that is already becoming a classic.

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