The photographer of Mauthausen, the holocaust from another perspective

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Netflix has premiered on its platform the story of the Catalan photographer Francesc Boix and his imprisonment in Mathausen

The photographer of Mauthausen, the holocaust from another perspective

The Mauthausen photographer is one of the most recent releases on the Netflix platform. The film portrays the life of the Catalan republican and photographer Francesc Boix in a concentration camp of the Mauthausen-Gusen complex, Austria. Boix, along with other Spanish prisoners, jealously guarded photographic evidence of the crimes committed by German soldiers during their stay in the camp.

Leer en español: El fotógrafo de Mauthausen, el holocausto desde otra perspectiva


Mario Casas (Las Brujas de Zugarramurdi, The 33) is the protagonist, he personifies Francesc Boix. Casas narrates in first person Mauthausen's bloody details and the reasons for his stay there. After the defeat in the Spanish Cvil War, thousands of Catalans fled to France, where they were captured by the Germans and interned in concentration camps by orders of Francisco Franco. Mauthausen is historically known as "the Spanish concentration camp" for being the one that most Spaniards received.  


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The Spanish site El Diario assures that the Spanish cinema has paid a "historical debt" with the Spanish prisoners through this film. Mar Targarona (Kidnapping), a producer and director with great career, is responsible for giving life to the script, one of her concerns was just to have a point of view of the concentration camps from the Spanish perspective and not Hollywood. It has been said that the role of Spain during the Second World War was "neutral", but although it did not take direct action in the conflict, Franco sympathized with Nazi Germany and many Spaniards, like Boix, played a prominent role.

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Photography, beyond the title, is the guiding thread of everything, since it is reconstructing what happened around several emblematic Mauthausen photographs. That is, it gives context and allows you to tell part of everyday life in the place. Unlike iconic films of the genre, such as Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List or Roman Polanski's The pianist, Mauthausen's photographer does not exploit too much the crudest part of abuse and conflict, but the importance of keeping alive the memory of what happened protecting the evidence.


At the production level, it offers a quality result, taking advantage of, according to El Comercio de Perú, part of the set of the field used in Mark Herman's Boy in the Striped Pajamas. The optimistic spirit that characterizes Spaniards through Mario Casas, who recreates a charismatic Boix and strategist, stands out in several moments. He uses all the resources with which he counts and constantly demonstrates his patriotism despite the limitations of the historical context. It is thanks to that that the film manages to differentiate itself from some clichés of the Hollywood films about the Great War.


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Among the exploits of this era, Boix's is as important as that of Oskar Schindler or Gilberto Bosques, since he managed to do justice to millions of victims of German fascism thanks to the evidence that he managed to protect with his life and that of other Spaniards. Mauthausen's photographer is a different film within the Ibero-American production, because although there are many films and series about the Spanish Civil War, few portray the phenomenon of the Second World War.


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Translated from "El fotógrafo de Mathausen, el holocausto desde otra perspectiva"

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