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Train of Life (1998)

3.9 of 5 from 46 ratings
1h 43min
Not released
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The film starts off with a man, named Schlomo (Lionel Abelanski), running crazily through a forest, with his voice playing in the background, saying that he has seen the horror of the Nazis in a nearby town, and he must tell the others. Once he gets into town, he informs the rabbi, and together they run through the town and once they have got enough people together, they hold a town meeting. At first, many of the men do not believe the horrors they are being told, and many criticize Schlomo, for he is the town lunatic, and who could possibly believe him? But the rabbi believes him, and then they try to tackle the problem of the coming terrors.
Amidst the pondering and the arguing, Schlomo suggests that they build a train, so they can escape by deporting themselves. Some of their members pretend to be Nazis in order to ostensibly transport them to a concentration camp, when in reality, they are going to Palestine via Russia. Thus the Train of Life is born. On their escape route through rural Eastern Europe, the train sees tensions between its inhabitants, close encounters with real Nazis as well as Communist partisans, and fraternization with gypsies, until the community arrives just at the frontlines between German and Soviet fire. Its ends with the voice-over of Schlomo himself, who tells the stories of his companions after the arrival of the train in the Soviet Union: Some went on to Palestine, some stayed in the Soviet Union, and some even made it to America. As he is telling this, a cut to a close-up of his face happens as he says, "That is the true story of my shtetl...", but then the camera makes a quick zoom-out, revealing him grinning and wearing prisoner's clothes behind the barbed wire of a concentration camp, and he ends with, "Ye nu, almost the true story!" Thus, it is implicated that he became mad because of having seen most of his companions exterminated, having made up the whole story for himself in his lunacy.
, , , , , , , , , , , Rodica Sanda Tutuianu, Sanda Toma, Zwi Kanar, , , , Marius Drogeanu, Vladimir Jurascu,
Radu Mihaileanu, Moni Ovadia
Train de vie
Action & Adventure, Comedy, Drama

1999 Sundance Film Festival World Cinema Audience Award Dramatic #2

Release Date:
Not released
Run Time:
103 minutes

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