Deliver Us From Evil (2008)
Award-winning director Gary Lester's first feature film about tolerance and the Holocaust has been enthusiastically received by audiences around the world.
Deliver Us From Evil offers the gripping stories of ordinary people who have suffered unimaginable consequences of hatred and intolerance.
(Photo courtesy SXC)
The film opened at the Daytona Beach Jewish Heritage Festival to an estimated audience of 10,000. It has since screened at the Non-violence International Film Festival in Ontario, Canada, and was broadcast nationally by Israeli television on Holocaust Remembrance Day.
In addition, the film has been accepted as a permanent resource at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, Ghetto Fighters Museum in Western Galilee, and Ravensbruecke Museum in Germany.
On August 23, 2008, the Florida Motion Picture & Television Association awarded a prestigious Crystal Reel Award to director Gary Lester .
Producer Richard Lester honors Claire Soria with Blue Heron's Humanitarian Award in 2010, as Charlie Carlson looks on.
In the first episode, Holocaust survivor Claire Soria describes her childhood in Nazi-occupied Belgium.
When her parents are forced to go into hiding, an elderly Christian couple agrees to take her into their home and raise her as a grand-daughter.
At great risk to their own lives, they save Claire's life. One day, however, the Gestapo comes knocking at the door.
Claire's Story is featured on IMDB -- The Internet Movie Data Base -- and may be seen by clicking here.
Every year since April, 2009, Claire's Story has been broadcast throughout the nation of Israel on NANA Channel 10 Television on Holocaust Remembrance Day.
(Photo by Gary Lester)
Holocaust survivor Asia Doliner talks about the Warsaw Ghetto.
In the second episode, Asia Doliner describes her life in Poland after the German invasion. She suffers the loss of her home, and then her parents. "When the Germans arrived, a reign of terror began," said Asia.
That reign of terror would soon claim both of her sisters as well. Making her way to Warsaw, she witnessed the Warsaw Ghetto uprising and its horrific aftermath. Before long, she was discovered and shipped off to two different Nazi concentration camps.
In a surprise turn of events, she would find herself assigned as a slave laborer in a German munitions factory, where she eventually was liberated. When she arrived in America after her journey through hell, Asia Doliner shouted, "I'm in heaven! I'm in heaven!"
(Photo courtesy The National Archives
Holocaust Heroes Honored
Blue Heron International Pictures announced recently that two heroes of the Holocaust who were featured in the documentary film Deliver Us From Evil have been singled out for special recognition in Israel.
According to Irena Steinfeldt, Director of the Righteous Among Nations department of Israel's Yad Vashem, "We are pleased to announce that the Commission for Designation of the Righteous has decided to award the title of Righteous Among the Nations to Lambert and Lea Sabaux, for help rendered to Jewish persons during the period of the Holocaust at the risk of their lives."
"Claire Soria was a six year old Jewish child living in Nazi-occupied Europe during World War II," said executive producer Richard Lester.
The names of these two heroes from the Holocaust will be inscribed on the Righteous Honor Wall at Yad Vashem.
No photos may exist of Lea Sabaux, but her letters to Claire are permanent reminders of her love and courage.
"Until we filmed her story, that elderly couple had received absolutely no recognition or special thanks for doing what few people are called to do -- risk their lives for a fellow human in peril," said Gary Lester.
"I felt in our small way, we had to honor Lambert and Lea for opening their hearts and home, which allowed Claire to survive the Holocaust."
Deliver Us From Evil includes rare color footage smuggled out of the Warsaw Ghetto. An audience of 10,000 attended the premiere at the Daytona Beach Jewish Heritage Festival in April, 2008.
The film has also screened at the Non-Violence International Film Festival in Ontario, Canada and won the Audience Choice Award at the Daytona Beach Film Festival on the same weekend.
Deliver Us From Evil has also aired on national television in Israel with Hebrew subtitles since April, 2009.
It won a prestigious Crystal Reel Award from the Florida Motion Picture & Television Association in August, 2008.
Holocaust Film Wins Award
At Daytona Beach Film Festival
Filmmaker Gary Lester's award-winning production, Deliver Us From Evil: Claire's Story, has been selected as Audience Favorite Short Film Winner at the Daytona Beach Film Festival.
Following the Sunday presentation in the News-Journal Performing Arts Center , an appreciative audience remained for about 30 minutes talking with Lester and Holocaust survivor Claire Soria.
The film also screened on the same weekend at the Non-Violence International Film Festival in Ontario, Canada .
"I am deeply honored," exclaimed Lester. "Claire's story offers us all lessons about tolerance, compassion, and empathy -- lessons which can bring about a better world if they are taken to heart.
Deliver Us From Evil: Claire's Story offers a compelling account of suffering, loss, and endurance.
Woven throughout the story are the faces of those who were doomed, but did not yet realize it...faces captured for all time on color film smuggled out of the Warsaw Ghetto.
In the film, Holocaust survivor Claire Soria describes her childhood in Nazi-occupied Belgium , hidden in a Christian home by a loving elderly couple...until the day the Gestapo knocked at the door.
Deliver Us From Evil premiered at the Jewish Heritage Festival in Daytona Beach, Florida, with an estimated audience of around 10,000.
In August, 2008, Deliver Us From Evil received the Florida film industry's highest honor -- The Crystal Reel Award from the Florida Motion Picture & Television Association.
The film, with Hebrew subtitles, has been accepted as a permanent resource at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem , as well as the Ghetto Fighters House Museum in western Galilee, and Ravensbrueck Concentration Camp Museum in Germany .
Deliver Us From Evil was originally broadcast nationally on Israel 10 Television on Holocaust Remembrance Day on May 1, 2008 throughout Israel. Due to the efforts of associate producer Alex Ringer, it was re-broadcast in April, 2010 and 2011.
Deliver Us From Evil has also been honored with an official site on The Internet Movie Data Base, IMDb.