15 Haunting Holocaust Movies on Netflix | Heart-breaking Yet Mandatory Watch
Tyrants’ brutal inclinations have often subjugated humanity. Since the dawn of time, people have been slain and freedom has been lost in numerous battles. The Holocaust, on the other hand, is one of our history’s most infamous and sad events. During World War II, Nazi forces and their allies carried out a horrific genocide that killed about six million Jews. Add in the fact that it occurred recently in history, and the war will have you wondering humanity’s very existence. There is a reason why the Holocaust is still regarded as one of the greatest genocides in human history.
Holocaust films have not only focused on the atrocities perpetrated during World War II, but also on the decades following the war, where the crimes’ consequences could be seen. The majority of these films have centered on bleak primary ideas and forgotten heroes who saved the Jewish people. Regardless of how small the library of such films is on Netflix, their aggregate presence is substantial. Here’s a list of some of the best Holocaust films available on Netflix right now. However, be warned: some of these will make you cry.
Table Of Content
- 1 #AnneFrank. Parallel Stories (2019)
- 2 Camp Confidential: America’s Secret Nazis (2021)
- 3 Defiance (2008)
- 4 Hitler: A Career (1977)
- 5 My Führer – The Really Truest Truth about Adolf Hitler (2007)
- 6 Operation Finale (2018)
- 7 Riphagen – The Untouchable (2016)
- 8 Steal a Pencil For Me (2007)
- 9 The Forgotten Battle (2021)
- 10 The Devil’s Mistress (2016)
- 11 The Zookeeper’s Wife (2017)
- 12 The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (2018)
- 13 The Last Days (1998)
- 14 The Resistance Banker (2018)
- 15 The Photographer of Mauthausen (2018)
#AnneFrank. Parallel Stories (2019)
Anne Frank’s narrative is possibly the most well-known from the Holocaust. The Gestapo, regrettably, captured the family in 1944 and transported them to concentration camps while she was just a girl when she went into hiding for two years. Only Anne’s father survived the war, and he went on to publish his daughter’s diaries as “The Diary of a Young Girl.” Helen Mirren retraces the events of the little girl’s life in ‘#AnneFrank. Parallel Stories,’ drawing parallels with the lives of five other women who managed to survive the Holocaust. This is an eye-opening documentary that tells a moving story about how brutal the Nazis were. You can see it right here.
Camp Confidential: America’s Secret Nazis (2021)
‘Camp Confidential’ is a short animated documentary film that shows how a top-secret US prisoner of war camp near Washington operates. After World War II, Jewish soldiers utilized the camp, which was kept secret for over five decades, to host and interrogate Nazi prisoners of war. The film gives a fascinating glimpse into the camp’s operations and even creates a graphic map of the camp’s construction and architecture, making it a must-see for history buffs.
‘Defiance,’ a film about survival, endurance, and heroism, is based on the true story of the Bielski group and how they protected over a thousand Jews from the Nazis. It is a fictionalized tale of how the Bielski brothers stood up to Nazi occupiers to save their fellow men, starring Daniel Craig, Liev Schreiber, Jamie Bell, and George MacKay. This film highlights the hardships that these individuals had to through in order to simply survive another day. This war narrative can be found here.
Hitler: A Career (1977)
This film, maybe one of the most influential documentaries on Hitler’s life and times, is about Hitler’s ambition for power, which resulted in the deaths and relocation of millions of people and propelled countries into war. The abuses of power perpetrated by Hitler are shown objectively so that people might understand who he was. The idea that he actually employed a number of photographers for photo ops to boost his propaganda is an incredible truth that is at the heart of this film. Rare articles, pictures, and video reels of Hitler’s speeches are shown in ‘Hitler: A Career,’ all of which are pivotal moments in history. They also altered the trajectory of Germany and the rest of the globe as we know it for the rest of time. You may watch the film here.
My Führer – The Really Truest Truth about Adolf Hitler (2007)
A comedy about one of history’s most deadly characters is always intriguing, and ‘My Führer – The Really True Truth about Adolf Hitler’ has some particularly amusing moments, making it a wonderful picture. The plot takes place in 1945, when Hitler realizes that he cannot win the war. The great orator is so depressed that he can’t even come up with a meaningful speech to motivate the German people. In this case, Goebbels, one of the Nazi Party’s senior officials, brings a Jew from a concentration camp to assist Hitler in writing his speech. The film, even at its most funny parts, stays loyal to history, and the dialogue references reflect this. The performances are good and do justice to writer-director Dani Levy’s humorous screenplay, which you can watch here.
Operation Finale (2018)
‘Effort Finale,’ set fifteen years after WWII ends, recounts a top-secret Israeli operation to bring down Nazi officer Adolf Eichmann in Argentina. Despite the fact that numerous of his fellow officers were convicted with war crimes after WWII, Eichmann escaped and stayed undetected. Following confirmation of Eichmann’s existence in Argentina, a team of Israeli agents travels to Argentina. They spend days scouting his house and daily schedule, eventually settling on an abduction plan that barely works. The kidnapping, however, notifies his personal guards, and the Israelis soon find themselves in a hazardous game of hide-and-seek with police and Nazi officials as they try to flee the strange country.
Riphagen – The Untouchable (2016)
Riphagen physically pulled the Netherlands apart for his personal good, in contrast to patriot Walraven Van Hall, who stood up for the Dutch people by sponsoring the resistance. He was a traitor who swindled the wealthy, handed Jews over to the Nazis, methodically hunted down and killed the resistance, and suppressed any form of justice. ‘Riphagen – The Untouchable’ is primarily a description of Riphagen’s nefarious acts and the events that followed. You may watch the film here.
Steal a Pencil For Me (2007)
You’d probably think we’re talking about a movie with a fake premise if we told you about a production that featured a love tale set during the Holocaust. After all, considering the horrors of WWII, this is one aspect that is rarely addressed through a camera lens. But ‘Steal a Pencil For Me’ is actually a documentary on Jack “Jaap” Polak, who was in a relationship with both his wife (with whom he was in an unhappy marriage) and his girlfriend at the time. This piece is a monument to the power of love in the face of war’s many horrors. You can see it right here.
The Forgotten Battle (2021)
The Forgotten Battle is a chilling narrative of circumstances that unite three seemingly unrelated persons in the days leading up to the Battle of the Scheldt, set in German-occupied Zeeland. Teuntje Visser, the first of the three, is a reluctant Resistance recruit who finds solace in the cause after her brother is executed for attacking a convoy by the Nazis. Marinus van Staveren, a Dutch Nazi volunteer, sympathizes with Teuntje and attempts to have her brother’s sentence reduced, but the system finally triumphs. Disillusioned by the Nazi dictatorship and everything it stands for, Staveren begins to doubt his commitment to the Nazi cause. Meanwhile, Sergeant Will Sinclair of the Glider Pilot Regiment and a few others crash land in the vicinity before engaging German troops in combat. The events leading up to the Battle of Walcheren Causeway are beautifully shown in the film, with each character playing a role in the other’s redemption.
The Devil’s Mistress (2016)
‘The Devil’s Mistress,’ a historical biography film that beautifully depicts the start of World War II, explores the life of actress Lda Baarová and exposes her experiences with Nazi officer Joseph Goebbels. Lda Baarová was a Czech actress who moved to Germany with the intention of appearing in the film ‘Barcarole.’ The film depicts her meeting and becoming acquainted with top-rank Nazi Officer Joseph Goebbels after going to Germany. Lda adapts into her new life when the acquaintance gets love. Her friendship with Goebbels, on the other hand, makes her aware of Nazi Germany’s ascent and everything that it represents. The rest of the film depicts Lda’s problem as she fights to accept the outbreak of World War II, guilt-ridden for her involvement in such a movement. The film does an excellent job of depicting the politics and struggles of early Nazi Germany and provides an accurate account of Hitler’s rise to power.
The Zookeeper’s Wife (2017)
‘The Zookeeper’s Wife,’ based on Diane Ackerman’s nonfiction book of the same name, tells the true story of Jan and Antonina Abiski, who saved many Jews and sheltered them inside the Warsaw Zoo during WWII. The film begins with aerial bombardment of Warsaw, then shows how Dr. Lutz Heck, the director of the Berlin Zoo, visits the Warsaw facility to remove the prize animals and shoot the others. Dr. Jan Abiski, the director of the Warsaw Zoo, and his wife Antonina decide to use their facility as a safe haven for Jews being punished in death camps. After converting the facility into a pig farm, the pair enlists the assistance of local resistance and begins sneaking inmates out of the Ghetto before hiding them in the zoo. The rest of the film documents the couple’s difficulties and brushes with death as they heroically face the Nazi onslaught, providing a real and authentic glimpse into the condition of Polish Jewish captives.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (2018)
In this 1946 love drama, Lily James plays Juliet Ashton, a novelist who is exchanging letters with a guy who lives in Guernsey, which was occupied by the Germans during WWII. This conversation piques her interest, so she travels to the island to learn more about what life was like back then. She also discovers that one person’s fate is still unknown, so she tries to figure out what happened. The film examines the atrocities that occurred during the German occupation through the eyes of the protagonist, which is one of the reasons why it is so compelling to see. This is where you will discover it.
The Last Days (1998)
‘The Last Days,’ an outstanding documentary on the plight of inmates during the Holocaust, uses actual images, papers, archive material, and interviews with holocaust survivors to present a vivid picture of Nazi Germany’s extremes. The film depicts the Nazis’ final solution, in which the Third Reich deployed vast resources to kill or deport thousands of Jews from Hungary in 1944. When the Nazis realized they were about to be defeated, they turned to massacring Jews as a last resort. The documentary, which includes interviews with five Hungarian Jews who survived Auschwitz and lived through the Final Solution, shows how even the most heinous of crimes could not eradicate humanity.
The Resistance Banker (2018)
‘The Resistance Banker’ takes place during the 1940s Dutch resistance. The film opens in the German-occupied Netherlands and is essentially a biopic of a Dutch banker named Walraven van Hall. One of the opposition members approaches Van Hall, asking for cash through his outreach. Van Hall creates a failsafe network of bogus loans with his brother to support guerilla warfare and assist those in exile. The twins then proceed to defraud the Dutch bank of millions of guilders to aid the resistance cause, directly in front of the Nazis’ eyes. Soon after 1945, Holland is liberated, and Hall flees into hiding to avoid capture. This one is a must-see with outstanding performances. You may watch the film here.
The Photographer of Mauthausen (2018)
‘El fotógrafo de Mauthausen,’ commonly known as ‘The Photographer of Mauthausen,’ is a Spanish biographical drama historical film. The film is based on true events and follows Francesc Boix, a Spaniard imprisoned in the Nazi concentration camp at Mauthausen in Austria. He is someone who strives to save the last traces of the tragedies that have occurred within its walls. It is without a doubt one of the most eye-opening films on this list, and we strongly advise you to see it for the gripping tale. You may watch the film here.