Message of forgiveness and hope in dark times

Noah Schnapp in Waiting for Anya (IMDB)

Set during World War II, Waiting for Anya tells a story of French villagers who rescued Jewish children to save them from Nazi persecution. Source: Jesuit Media.

The film is an adaptation of the 1991 young adult novel of the same name, written by Michael Morpurgo.

It explores the history of the war, as seen through the eyes of a 13-year-old shepherd boy, Jo (Schnapp) in the summer of 1942 in the German occupation of France.

Jo discovers a group of Jewish children hidden on the remote farm of a reclusive widow, Horcada (Huston), who lives on a pig farm in a village in Southern France.

Horcada is also harbouring a her Jewish son-in-law, Benjamin (Schmidt), who has lost track of his daughter, Anya.

Jo’s own father is in a German POW camp and he does what he can to help, supplying intelligence to Horcada to get the children across the border over Pyrenees mountains to Spain and freedom from Nazi persecution.

Of necessity, this is a film that deals with violent happenings, and it tells of a period that is a dark part of human history.

The film has been classified "M" because it profiles violent events. The rating is intended to indicate that parents should be cautious about what their children should see. However, rather that conveying a warning to keep away, this is a film that mature children should see in the company of their parents, so that the lessons of forgiveness and hope in evil times can be mutually understood, discussed, and shared.

Review by Peter Sheehan, Jesuit Media.

Waiting for Anya: Starring Noah Schnapp, Anjelica Huston, Thomas Kretschmann, Frederick Schmidt, and Dolma Raisson. Directed by Ben Cookson. Rated M (Violence). 109 min. In select cinemas now.


Waiting for Anya (Jesuit Media via Australian Catholics

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