Mr. Rakowski

Never underestimate the power of time and understanding to bring the love between father and son to the surface. A hard emotional journey that is worth every second.

Polish-born Sam Rakowski (1916) had to face anti-Semitism starting at an early age. Pursued by the Nazis, he and his wife Celia eventually ended up in Auschwitz-Birkenau. After surviving the horrors of the camps, they immigrated to the United States and had a son named Richie, now a successful 55-year-old businessman. Since the death of his wife, Sam has occupied a small house on Richie's estate. Despite their awkward relationship, Richie provides his father with the best possible care. Both men are traumatized, Sam because of the war and his first son's death, Richie on account of a childhood marked by his detached and sometimes aggressive father. Separate interviews reveal how serious the lack of communication between the two is, and how badly Richie wants to understand his father. As a result, he goes through an arduous process in an attempt to redefine his view of his father. Jan Diederen's camera acts like a vigilant mediator... Written by Jan Diederen

Sam Rakowski is 91 jaar oud en heeft Auschwitz-Birkenau overleefd. Hij is slecht ter been en woont in een luxe bungalow op het landgoed van zijn zoon Richie, een zeer succesvol zakenman. De verhouding tussen vader en zoon is nooit goed geweest. Sam was een agressieve, kille vader en dat is hij op hoge leeftijd nog steeds. Richie geeft zijn vader de allerbeste zorg en biedt hem alle gelegenheid te delen in de warmte van zijn gezin, maar dit slaat niet echt aan. Halverwege de vijftig heeft hij nog steeds niet het mysterie dat zijn vader voor hem is, weten te doorgronden.