'Europa Europa' is a real-life story made into a movie. Check out this article to know the plot and summary of 'Europa Europa'.

Europa Europa

Based on an autobiography written by Solomon Perel, 'Europa Europa' is a 1990 film directed by Agnieszka Holland. The movie had been made in German. The original title in German was 'Hitlerjunge Salomon', which translates to 'Hitler Youth Salomon'. The lead characters have been portrayed by Marco Hofschneider and Julie Delpy. The film also stars Solomon Perel who plays himself. It revolves around a young Jewish boy who survives the persecution from the Nazis by posing as an Aryan German. The movie reveals the good and evil traits that every person inhibits. But what needs to be remembered is that at the end of the day, each one is a human. Read through the following lines to know more about the plot and summary of 'Europa Europa'.

Europa Europa - The Movie

Solomon (also called Solek) is happily living with his family in Germany. However, they become the victim of a Kristallnacht where his sister is killed. But, he, his parents and his two brothers, David and Isaac manage to escape to Lodz, Poland, assuming that they would be safe there. Nonetheless, Poland is attacked by Germany during the September Campaign. Solek and his brother, David are sent to the other side of Poland, but is separated due to confusion. Thus, Solek lands up in a Soviet orphanage in Grodno. However, to Solek's disappointment, Soviet Union too is attacked by Germany and he is captured by the German soldiers.

Due to his good command over German and Russian, he convinces them to become an interpreter. He meets Stalin's son, Yakov Dzhugashvili, captured by the Germans at the same time. He pretends to be a German named Josef "Jupp" Peters. However, his identity is discovered by a gay German soldier, Robert, who, in turn, keeps the piece of information to himself. Hence, two become good friends. Later, Robert and two other comrades are killed in combat. Next, Solek tries to escape to Soviet, but he is followed by a few German soldiers. He pretends to command the Soviets to surrender. In doing so, the Germans see him as a war hero. He is then sent to an elite Hitler Youth School, where his captain from Pomerania agrees to adopt him.

In the train, he realizes that he shares quite a few similarities with Hitler including his birthday and physical attributes. The woman escorting him gets physically and sexually attracted towards him. Both are seen having sex. At the school, Solek (Josef) is seen to have traits of an Aryan when in reality he is a Jew. On learning that a doctor would be visiting the school to perform a health examination, Solek worries that his circumcision and Jewish identity would be revealed. Hence, he pretends to have a severe toothache and escapes the examination. Solek finds his love interest in a German girl named Leni, a fervent Nazi who lost her father in the war. However, he cannot get intimate with her without revealing his secret.

Months pass by and Solek and Leni do not see each other. One fine day, Solek visits his new mother and learns that Leni is pregnant and is planning to give the baby to the Fuhrer. Solek realizes that the father of the baby is none other than Gerd, his best friend at Hitler Youth School. Here, he also reveals his truth of being a Jewish and promises not to tell Leni about it. War breaks and the boys at the Hitler Youth are sent to the border of Berlin to fight. While at the border, he surrenders to the Red Army by speaking Russian demanding that he is a Jew, not a German. Almost about to have been shot, his brother Isaac recognizes him and saves him. He then emigrates to the British Mandate of Palestine where he is reunited with his Jewish heritage.

Did you know?
  • The film's response was tepid in the film's native; Germany.
  • The German Oscar selection committee did not nominate the film in the best foreign film category.
  • To everyone's amusement, the film turned out to be one of the most successful films made in German history.
  • It went on to bagging awards at the Golden globes and was nominated for the best screenplay at the Oscars.
  • It grossed $30,000 in the first weekend when it was released in two screens.
  • The film stars the real Solomon Perel who stars as himself in a brief appearance towards the end of the film.
Other Related Films
If you are looking for other films that explain and depict the history and the lives of Jews in a broader spectrum, try watching a few of these:
  • Anne frank
  • Prince of Egypt
  • Joseph
  • Documentaries on the Holocaust
  • Prague, and
  • A Jewish girl in Shanghai
The story of this magnitude has failed to make a connection with some on an emotional level. On the other hand, the screenplay and the magic realism of the plot touched the lives of thousands worldwide and went on to become one of the greatest films ever made in the history of worldwide cinema. Don't forget to watch this movie if you would like to understand all dimensions and views of life from the eyes of a Jew. It cannot get more candid than this! You get to see scenes that can be extremely heart wrenching as Solly; the protagonist of this film puts himself through physical and emotional trauma to survive in a world filled with cruelty and injustice.