WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Saturday, November 29, 2008

THE BOY IN THE STRIPED PAJAMAS

I saw the most amazing and disturbing film Saturday afternoon. Football seems so insignificant.  The title of the post links to the review of the movie. 




I had been reading the reviews of the movie "The Boy In The Striped Pajamas"  and decided it wasn't for me. So I went to the mall and to be totally stupid, bought a ticket for Transporter 3. I walked by the movie "The Boy In The Striped Pajamas." My movie wasn't starting for ten minutes, so what the heck? I walked in and watched from the aisle.


 OK. I get it.  An 8 year old boy who is the son of an Officer in the SS moves with his parents to "the farm" that his father is in charge of.  He walks to the farm and sees an 8 year old boy sitting behind the barbed wire. Not for me. I get up and walk into Transporter 3. I sit there, hating myself for not being strong enough to watch the damn film, and what happens? The movie won't start. People are yelling, booing, and I realize this is not my crowd; this is not where I belong. 
 I get up and walk back into the Boy In the Striped Pajamas. 

This is the story of Bruno, whose father is an SS Officer, and Shumel, who is in a camp with his father who was a watchmaker. Bruno has been told that the camp  is a farm, and the people wearing clothes with numbers on them are playing a game. The barbed wire fence is to keep the animals in he is told. Bruno is not allowed near the farm, but of course his curiosity cannot keep him away.   Bruno is bored- he has no friends at home, and but for an older sister who is buying the Hitler Youth propaganda their tutor is feeding them, he has no one to play with. 

Bruno walks through the woods to the camp where he meets Shumel through the barbed wire and they become friends. Through the eyes of this eight year old, we watch him try and make sense of the camp/farm and his friend Shumel, who "luckily" gets to play the game. Bruno watches through the window one day when he father screens a propaganda film of the camp, complete with the cafeteria, concerts, and a walk of stones that show children happily playing on. Those stones are briefly shown again at the end of the movie, and it is indeed a haunting scene. 

This movie does not go the way one would think. There is no sudden realization by Bruno as to what is going on and there is no tearful parting scene as Bruno watches as Shumel gets led off to the gas chamber. No sappy concentration camp ending here.  But what does happen during the last twenty minutes becomes quickly evident as the final scene unfolds.  The ending is not a surprise, but it is spellbinding as the movie relentlessly marches towards what becomes  a forgone conclusion once a rubicon is crossed. 

And then the screen fades slowly to dark and the movie is over, and people in the theatre are just sitting there, exhausted, silently crying, shaken in a Shakespearean tragedy circa Germany 1940. 

I'll post some picks in the comments section if I can bring myself to think about football, but I wouldn't trust them. Not with the way I'm feeling right now. 

See You In Court Monday.

37 comments:

Anonymous said...

BATT.LEO/FIRFGT/EMS/ETC

In English please?

I assume battery on law enforement officer?

Rumpole said...

Battery on a law enforcement officer or fire fighter or emergency medical technician, or etc.

Anonymous said...

rumpole - since you are reviewing great movies (and i agree with "striped pajamas") ... you need to also see "slumdog millionaire". wow, it is set in mumbai, india and shows the terror that the world's poor experience.

it is extremely compelling and a must see. i have personally seen the favelas in rio where the poorest of the poor live, been to dachau and aushwitz to see the ovens, saw the kiiling fields in cambodia where a ruthless dictator pol pot murdered millions of his citizens in order to essentially rob their material items and the refugee camps in africa.

with a new american leader offering hope to the world, we - as ordinary citizens - need to be AWARE of genocide, civil rights violations and other atrocities that are inhumane ... and do something about it. NOW is the time to get involved. take action and make the world a better place. it is up to us - or sadly, it will be too late.

Rumpole said...

We're at 654 and have the following picks:

San Diego -5.5 over Atlanta +100.

Indy -4.5 at Cleveland +150.

Anonymous said...

So Rump you know I love your ass and I'm telling you this to save some face...the boy in the stripped pajamas or striped pajamas? Stripped is a little creepy! Hugs and kisses...

Anonymous said...

saw this movive as well. have seen lots of holocaust movies this one hit me harder than all of them. at end i felt like i had been hit in the stomach.

great great movie

Anonymous said...

I was born in the 1970s, and didn’t go through WWII. (I hate the word “holocaust.”)

So, I read and studied and researched all I could about what happened between ’39 and ’45. I eventually discovered that I could not begin to appreciate what happened until I had a wife and children of my own. You have to have a family of your own before you can appreciate what happened, because you have to imagine what it would be like to spend six or seven days on a train holding your kids, with no water and no food and no answers. Just think about that for a minute.

Then, upon arrival, you have to imagine what it would be like to have a stranger separate you from your wife and kids and tell you that you must let them go to the left and you had to go to the right, never to be seen again. And then, you have to imagine that you are wondering where your wife and kids are, and a day later to be told by a different stranger in the same uniform as the first stranger that your wife and kids have been killed and cremated. If you can imagine what that would really feel like, then you can begin to imagine your first week in Nazi Germany.

Then you can think about your parents, brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles and cousins. All dead. For no reason. Six million. 6,000,000.

Imagine the fear, trying to keep the kids calm. Trying to make sure they are not afraid. They are crying. They are scared. Your wife says, “Don’t be afraid, everything is fine. Daddy will be here in a minute.” And the gas is coming out of the shower heads. And Daddy never comes. He wants to be there, but he can’t be there to comfort his family as they are murdered. Your children are murdered and you can’t do anything. And nothing happens to the people who did it. Nothing. No one ever looks for them and they are never punished.

If you can picture the scene, you may understand why we fight so hard to make sure that it can never happen again.

That is all.

Anonymous said...

"Striped", not "stripped." Are you simply illiterate?

Rumpole said...

If all you can take out this is that I spelled "striped" wrong, you need some help. You've got a lot of anger and in the end it will eat you up, not me.

Anonymous said...

Sometime, during the 70's, I went to a movie entitled "The Cocktail Party." ( I have been unable to locate current infomation about it.) It opened at a typical urban cocktail party where the guests were snappily dressed and were engaging in the usual behavior and conversation - pleasantries and a lot of superficial nonsense. After some words were spoken by several of the attendees, the movie faded and cut to scenes, real filmed scenes, from the Holocaust, namely, the umimaginable horrors of the death camps. Then, the scene cut back to the cocktail party. And so it went for an hour or more - back and forth from one situation to the other.
The horror for me crystalized when a saw a scene, clearly in winter, in a camp, of a group of naked women being herded to some awful end. One of the women looked exactly like my mother. Suddenly, it hit home. These were the faces of people no different from you and I. Even now, my stomach knots up when I recall what became so very real and relevant to me - an event in history that is unparalelled for it's barbarity and betrayal of humanity.

fake jay white said...

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fake pannunzio said...

Dude. Not to be pedantic. But I'm the Dolphin rocker. And I salute anyone who rocks not you.

Scott Saul said...

Saw the movie and I loved it. The brutal ending is what made the movie great. It took a fairie tale premise and brought it down to earth.

As a Jew, I have an obligation to smash any type of antisemitism and human oppression. I have no tolerance for it despite living in the "land of the free".

As a human being, it is difficult for me to remain quiet when I see something that is wrong and immoral.

Last month, I met a Holocaust survivor and this 80+ man spoke about things, with a vigor and emotion, as though it was yesterday.

I curse the world for allowing the Holocaust to occur. This country turned it's back in admitting Jews.

We are in the perfect profession to help people that are oppressed. We represent plenty of "bad guys" but we also always see oppressive behavior. That is why every and any Judge should always allow both sides to make, and finish, their point.

Phil R said...

I've always lived with the Holocaust in the collective history of my religion. It was a tragedy. It was awful. Never forget and never again. And then I had a boy and then another boy. And all of the sudden the Holocaust became personable. My sons were living embodiment that the Jewish people won and Hitler lost,

And beyond that the unimaginable horror of the Holocaust became imaginable to me. All I had to do was look at my sons and the terror of Krystalnacht became real. The horror of losing everything and being transported like cattle became real. Not real in the sense it was about to happen (although every time I hear someone say this is a Christian Nation, I shudder) but real in the sense I could now understand the utter horror, pain, and tragedy of it all.

For so many reasons, once I became a father I do not sleep as well as I used to.

Phil R said...

I've always lived with the Holocaust in the collective history of my religion. It was a tragedy. It was awful. Never forget and never again. And then I had a boy and then another boy. And all of the sudden the Holocaust became personal. My sons were living embodiment that the Jewish people won and Hitler lost,

And beyond that the unimaginable horror of the Holocaust became imaginable to me. All I had to do was look at my sons and the terror of Krystalnacht became real. The horror of losing everything and being transported like cattle became real. Not real in the sense it was about to happen (although every time I hear someone say this is a Christian Nation, I shudder) but real in the sense I could now understand the utter horror, pain, and tragedy of it all.

For so many reasons, once I became a father I do not sleep as well as I used to

Anonymous said...

Phil R, you are a smart man. You are definitely one of the best people I have met in the REGJB in the 20 years I have been going there.

Scott Saul, you are smarter than folks give you credit for.

Rump, your an ass. A pompous ass.

Rumpole said...

Ahem....it pains me to do this because you are correct- both gentlemen are smart and excellent lawyers. BUT, you want the possessive "you're" not "your"

What you meant to write was : "Rump, you're an ass" not "your an ass."

But point taken. Now you should go take a remedial english class at MDCC, lest someone write "YOU'RE ILLITERATE."

Anonymous said...

"If all you can take out this is that I spelled "striped" wrong, you need some help."

The fact that you are the one who wrote the above, proves my point--urine ass, Rump!

Anonymous said...

phil r you left out that sarah palin is the embodiment of all the hateful bigotry in humans that could make the holocaust happen

Anonymous said...

The Nunz would never use "pedantic" in a sentence...

If you can dish it out.... said...

Rump, if all you can take out of the above post is that s/he spelled "your" instead of "you're", you need some help. You've got a lot of anger and in the end it will eat you up, not me.

Anonymous said...

I think Rump's spelling correction was meant to be cynical, because he gets slammed so much.

I don't necessarily have to agree with or like Rump.

But calling him an ass, a urine ass, and all of this other crazy stuff, aren't we lowering the bar?

Since when did the looming threat of ad hominem attacks become the common staple of logic, debate and discourse?

Oh wait, I'm part of a profession that likes to engage in repeated backstabbing over petty crap. Guess I should check myself.

Rumpole said...

You know Howard Stern makes a 100 million dollars a year and he started his career by getting people to love to hate them.

Love me, hate me, just read the blog. Of course I'm pompous. It's not bragging if you can do it, and I most surely can bring the heat when I need to. (except I can't pick football games anymore, ending a remarkable two year streak that I challenge anyone anywhere to top. )

CYA. WOuldn't want to Be ya

Rumpole said...

Undercover Mother. Tomorrow. Only on the Justice Building Blog.

Anonymous said...

Actually, I disagree with the attacks on Rump. I can see why you may see him is arrogant. I don't see him that way though. If you read this blog often, you'll see that he's just having fun. And, like many bright people, he has a self deprecating sense of humor. If he's frustrated it's because he has a right to be. I too am sick of the constant and inane attacks posted on this blog. It's obvious why so many cases last so much longer than they should..............some of ya'll are carrying way too much irrational anger. Chill out. Life is good. Appreciate it and enjoy it.

BTDT

PS----if Rump were as arrogant as you claim, he'd be using this blog much more as the bully pulpit so many of you try to use it for. That he doesn't speaks volumes about his character.

Anonymous said...

Rump are you trying to redeem yourself with this post? Did your conscience come sneaking in while chomping down on popcorn?

Howard Stern said...

Your readership is now a fraction of what it once was. You're boring ...

Anonymous said...

Just watched a illegal version of the movie on the internet. Great movie.

Rumpole said...

1:46 AM. Two points: 1) you're reading (notice the proper use of the possessive) and it's 1:46 AM. You have a choice with your (see the difference?) entertainment dollar, and you spend it here.

2) I removed public access to the hit meter (someone was getting cute and tried to hack me) but readership is UP UP UP. Even the difficult 5-6 hour (my hit meter breaks down blog access by time and location. For some strange reason we are pretty popular in Chicago. There's one firm there that reads the blog fairly regularly) .
So unless you have proof otherwise, you're (there's that word again. Getting the hang of it?) just whistling in the early morning dark hours. Alone, Angry. And reading.

South Florida Lawyers said...

I am a WWII buff and a student of that period of history and the Holocaust in particular. I've been thinking of taking my older children to see the film, so I'm interested in Rump's take.

Yet some of the reviews I have read have been brutal, that the film is overly sentimental, that it is cloying and reductionist, much like some of the criticism after-the-fact directed to Life is Beautiful.

Do you think any of that is valid?

Anonymous said...

Rumps (6:51) Your hit meter says otherwise, which is why you've removed it from public view. The proof is on the meter and your cover-up doesn't change the fact that you're just not very popular any more. The reasons are myriad: you're vapid, mundane, draped in self-importance. The few of us still tuning in like to watch disasters right to the end.

Anonymous said...

The people who put the kid into the striped pajamas are the kind of people that would tell the world that someone was kicked off a golf course when he wasn't. Same fascist, lying mentality that we see here in Rumpole.

Rumpole said...

I had to laugh when I read 2:49. This reader has been disbarred. He has lawsuits up the ying yang. Judges toss his stuff out of court and he is writing 50 K checks to the hated Florida Bar. Indeed, he has been banned from this blog. And through it all- the relentless mocking he gets on national blogs, the lawsuits, the harassment, he is still angry at me for knowing that he was tossed off the Coral Gables Golf Course for rude behavior. Of course anyone on his email list or a victim of his vicious attacks could well imagine the type of rude and nasty individual that we duffers have all come across on the golf course. And it just burns him to no end that i know he was tossed off like a lump of coal. And in his sorry little world the crime of the holocaust is equal to his golf course hijinks. It's sad really. Very very sad

Rumpole said...

11:01 "my hit meter says otherwise?" What hit meter? You can't see the hit meter. But FYI- todays totals:

1351 hits; 1299 original entries. That means that a total of 1,351 times today through 2:30 the blog's pages were viewed, and of those views, 1299 came from separate IP addresses, presumably meaning they were from different people although its conceivable someone could look at the blog at home and then at work. Anyway, I'm please with the readership, although I'd one or two less readers if you get the hint.

rejected-and-depressed-attorney said...

10:05- What?

Anonymous said...

Morris Rich was my landlord on Miami Beach back in the 90's. Here's the Miami Herald obitary of his brother, Abe...In the Kovno ghetto, his hands kept Abraham Rutschaisky alive. In the world of pool and billiards, they made him famous. A talented woodturner like his father and late brother, Morris, the teenage Abe did something the Nazis found useful: He made shaving brushes and razor handles for officers serving in Lithuania and toys for their children. Later at the Dachau death camp, he carved wooden clogs for fellow prisoners and wooden canteens for the guards who tormented them. As Abe Rich of Miami Beach, he created custom cue sticks in a tiny workshop at 428 Jefferson Ave. Initially Florida Cue, the company now is called Star Cue Manufacturing, listed in the Blue Book of Pool Cues. He died on Nov. 25 at 82. Though he never advertised, Abe sold to professionals as well as amateurs. Minnesota Fats once bought four cues and Jackie Gleason, who portrayed the legendary pool shark in The Hustler, bought one inlaid with diamonds, rubies and sapphires. Six days a week Abe rose at 5 a.m., then took a bus from Sunny Isles Beach to the shop, where he'd been working alone since 1973. He'd open a can of sardines for lunch, and turn blocks of wood into works of art on his lathe. October 8 was no different. But the following day, unaware that he had non-Hodgkins lymphoma and colon cancer, Abe passed out during Yom Kippur services, said nephew Howard Rich.
He was taken to Aventura Hospital, where he later died. ''Abe was a treasure that I don't think anybody knew about,'' said Greg Hark, a Delray Beach photographer who owns several Star cues. ``He has wood aging on the racks for 50, 60 years. He's got wood from Brazilian trees that are probably extinct.'' Abe lived for his craft, caring little for money or material things. He never owned an apartment and charged bargain prices for collector's-item cues.
Gleason, who supplied his own gems, probably paid $300, Howard said, but the average Star cue costs $180, some only $75. In 1983, Abe Rich told The Miami Herald: ``If you will take away my work, I think I would be a lost man, a miserable man. I am not afraid to work. I am afraid not to work. If I can take a piece of wood and make a cue, then I can be a happy man.'' He had abundant reasons not to be happy. Lithuanian thugs killed his father in the early days of World War II even before the Nazis had a chance to murder his mother and younger brother.
And a Nazi soldier condemned Abe to a life of pain after slamming a rifle butt into his back, breaking it. He stood 5-foot-3 and ''looked like the Hunchback of Notre Dame,'' Howard Rich said. Because of this, he never married.
Yet Abe didn't dwell on his tragedies. He preferred to talk about how the same soldier later became a lifesaver for himself and his brother, Morris, Howard's father, by sneaking food to them.
That kept the Rutschaisky boys strong enough to endure the horrors of Dachau, where, Howard said, they had to haul heavy bags of concrete. At liberation, he weighed 75 pounds. He and Morris spent two years recuperating at an Austrian monastery, then Abe headed for what was to become the state of Israel. In 1962, Abe decided to join Morris, who was running a successful wood shop in Miami. He stopped in New York to visit an uncle, Izzy Rutschaisky, cue maker to celebrities like Fred Astaire and Erroll Flynn, and stayed a year to apprentice. In Miami, Abe worked with Morris until 1973 then opened his own shop. ''The place was a mess,'' Greg Hark said, but Abe at the lathe was a joy to watch. ''In this day and age, nobody hand-turns a lathe like that. It's a lost art,'' Hark added. About four years ago, Miami Beach freelance photographer Joe Gato stepped into the shop. ''It looked like something stuck in an old European time warp,'' said Gato. Abe ``looked like Central Casting's version of a good pool cue maker. He was all bent over and he'd look up at you with blue, soulful eyes. It was like visiting one of the Hobbits.'' About the same time that Gato discovered Abe Rich, so did Rabbi Shraga Mann of the Chabad in South Beach. New in town, he was introducing himself to Jewish merchants. Behind a flower business, he found Abe.
'It was a little narrow shop with piles of wood, paper -- you could barely walk. I see this old man. I ask him, `Are you Jewish?' Abe says, 'Do I look Jewish?' I got my answer.'' On Sunday, Shraga Mann prayed over Abe Rich one last time, at his funeral. Attached to the casket: a Star cue. In addition to nieces and nephews, he is survived by sisters Faye Salzman of Aventura and Miriam Fuchs of Israel. The family suggests donations to the Holocaust Memorial Committee.
Rest peacefully, both Morris & Abe.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole
My Step-Mother was born in a D.P.camp. Her Mother and Grandmother survived the Nazi camp till the Brits liberated it; her father perished there. No one stood up for them, so Wemust stand up for the accused and hated of society
D. Sisselman