Where Is Anne Frank (\N)

Emily Carey, Sebastian Croft, Ruby Stokes,
The film follows the journey of Kitty, the imaginary friend to whom Anne Frank dedicated her diary. A fiery teenager, Kitty wakes up in the near future in Anne Frank's house in Amsterdam and embarks on a journey to find Anne, who she
  • 6.4 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2018-09-07 Added:
  • Writer:
  • Ari Folman, Director:
  • Diana Elbaum, Jani Thiltges, Producer:


6 / 10

"Where Is Anne Frank" written by Gregory Mann

"Where is Anne Frank"

"Where is Anne Frank" begins with a miracle, Kitty (Ruby Stokes), the imaginary friend to whom Anne Frank (Emily Carey) writes in her famous Diary, comes to life in present-day Amsterdam. Unaware that 75 years have gone by, Kitty is convinced that if she's alive, then Anne must be alive too. It's the beginning of an adventurous journey. It's the story of Kitty's quest across contemporary Europe searching for her beloved friend. Armed with the precious Diary and with help from her friend Peter (Sebastian Croft), who runs a secret shelter for undocumented refugees, Kitty follows Anne's traces from the Annex to her tragic end in the 'Holocaust'. Disoriented by our broken world and the injustices that child refugees endure, Kitty wants to replace Anne's cause. Through her honesty, she presents a message of hope and generosity addressed to future generations.

Kitty is the leading role and the protagonist of the movie. What happened to Anne during the end of the war. How did she die? In doing so, she also discovers the current situation in Europe, with refugees from all over the world, running away from war zones. Another two conditions are to connect past and present time and to follow the last 7 dreadful months of Anne Frank's life. Kitty has always been there. But just in the Diary and not as an actual person. Anne Frank has left us many descriptions of Kitty, who she's, what she looks like, what kind of personality she's. And of course, there's her dialogue with Kitty. The movie makes Kitty into an alter ego of Anne. She's not under the control of parents who set her limits, as Anne was. For Kitty, there are no fellow inhabitants in her hideout criticising her. She's therefore free to do whatever Anne had wanted to do in her own imagination. In the movie Kitty becomes an activist for refugees in the present day. She's a part of new, political youth movements about climate and human rights. She's indeed a child of our times.

The character of Kitty started out as Anne's imaginary friend, basically. But in the movie she's building a bridge between the past and the present. As she ventures out into the world, she meets young people such as herself who are in danger, maybe because they've to run away from war zones. That reminds Kitty of Anne and the fact that Anne did not have an opportunity to run away during her relatively short time in hiding. This experience turns Kitty into an activist. At the same time, she realises her powers to promote a movement for children's rights. And these powers grow from her being a visitor in our world. Alongside Kitty, audiences confront the 'Holocaust'. The character of Kitty is not meant to be an extension or a rebirth of Anne's personality after her death. As Kitty leaves the house and ventures forth into the world, she has her own options. The Diary casts the relationship between Anne and her sister Margot (Skye Bennett), her mother Edith (Samantha Spiro) and Albert Dussel (Andrew Woodall) in a negative way in some respects. The one scene where the Frank family arrives at the Auschwitz concentration camp is the hardest task in the whole movie.

Shortly after Otto Frank (Michael Maloney) published the Diary of his daughter Anne Frank in 1947, he decides to have it adapted for stage. The success of the Broadway show 'The Diary Of A Young Girl' (1956) followed by the Oscar winning movie by George Stevens is the beginning of the success of the Diary to ensure that all royalties are used to support charitable and educational work, Otto Frank established the 'Anne Frank Fonds' in Basel in 1963, which he appoints his universal heir. Against this background the foundation initiated the animation movie in which Anne Frank's imaginary friend comes to life. The movie represents an introduction to lessons of history, the 'Holocaust', discrimination and anti-Semitism.

"Where is Anne Frank" is a 'Holocaust' movie. It's a new dimension to tell the 'Holocaust' story. But our minds are incapable of creating a visual connection to these stories and cannot fully grasp what happened. Sure, animation lets you reinvent the world. But the movie decides at the outset to break with a certain pattern of the genre. Most war movies show the present in colour and the past as monochrome. "Anne Frank" goes the opposite way. Therefore, in the movie present-day Amsterdam is depicte in monochrome colours, the city is in wintertime and has been completely drained of colour. On the other hand, the past is seen through the eyes of Anne, it's very lively, colourful and rich in tones. If you has to tell such a harsh story, you can work either with humour or a lot of emotions. But if you exaggerate and force the audience to delve into tired clichés of agony and woe, you risk losing your viewers. You must maintain an even-handedness while showing human aspects of the characters and avoid overplaying emotions and turning to gimmicks. You've to present a new, entirely different approach to the Diary, which is fairly well known among young audiences. Scenes unfolding in the past are telling the story of the Diary and even the future beyond the 'Holocaust' has been anticipated in the Diary to a certain extent. But the movie tells the story in a different way, namely not as a monologue by Anne, but as a dialogue between the girls. For us, the imaginary friend has become real and they're discussing among themselves what Anne has written down as her monologue.

It's not only about the 'Holocaust', which must of course never be forgotten, but also about the lessons that we can take from it for our own life. So it's not only a matter of looking back at what happened then, but also to see what's essential about the Diary and it's message for the new generation. The educational programme looks at the 'Holocaust', Jews, anti-Semitism, but also at children's rights, migration and refugees today. The movie deals with these topics at a time when this is urgently needed again. But this story is missing the horrible fates of those who starved in the ghettoes or who were deported in trains towards the East into the 'Final Solution'. When it comes to the past, these elements are dramatic, they originate from, or are based on the original text in the Diary. What's shown in the movie is what arises from reading the text and from what Anne Frank wrote about her dreams, emotions and wishes. Although the par about the 'Holocaust' is not in the Diary. Reading the Diary without putting it into the context of the present is meaningless as we need to learn the lessons of the past to make a difference. Children are still running away from war zones and their lives are in danger, minorities, refugees and individuals are still discriminated against.

Written by Gregory Mann.

8 / 10

Brilliant way to ? remember ?

This movie is not afraid to mix a lot of ideas to remember the spirit of Anne Frank. The idea is to keep alive a war against racism and intolerance in a modern and brilliant movie. The animation is amazing and the way it represents nazism is absolutely beautiful and horrifying. Maybe I disagree a lot when I see parallels between Europeans Cops and nazis, so the movie is not perfect as was Congress. But maybe to show to the young generation when our aged grand parents will disappear with the memory of this horrible war.

10 / 10


I almost cried as I watched this brilliant movie. What a beautiful way to show what Anne Frank and her diary "Kitty" mean for the young people of today.

3 / 10

Can't believe in good intent for doing

It is a problem with historic-point-cinema - hard to do it right. Three ways to do of 1) make parody (hi to genius Charlie Chaplin); 2) documentary (Barefoot Gen for example); 3) near or really fantasy tale (like Handmaid's)I guess this animation worked in the third way mixed with kinda.. alternate history, but in that case here is not enough.. well.. alternate and fantasy? They could add magic spear, unicorns, do Frank as a boy, aliens, heck, anything to show different story or different perspective of alternative.

And since it have not, animation looks raw if not to say more. Well, I might be wrong, but.. something just fishy.

8 / 10

Another Intriguing Work of Art From Ari Folman

In 2008, director Ari Forman gave us Waltz With Bashir, an emotional attempt to settle accounts with his own past, when as a teenage soldier he participated in the most violent event of the war between Palestine and Israel. 13 years later, the director's new project hits the theatres, this time focusing on Anne Frank and the diary she wrote while hiding from the Nazis. With this new film, Ari Forman proves that even the animation aiming at families may be as powerful as other classic representatives of the genre.

The story divides into two layers: the first one focuses on Anne Frank, giving the audience the account of the uncertainty and tragedies her and her family went through, with the deportation to the death camp as its culmination.

The second layer concerns Anne's imaginary friend Kitty. As a result of unexplained phenomenon, Kitty awakens from the diary. Not knowing what happened to Anne, she tries to find her by all cost.

Ari Folman seems to be an admirer of animation. He knows how to use the medium so that his movies work in the emotional sphere. Despite some graphic scenes, Waltz With Bashir had many sequences that supplied the story with more poetical scent. Where Is Anne Frank works to some extent in a similar way. However, we never see violence directly. It's toned down, replaced by the imagery resembling the unforgettable animated sequence from Alan Parker's The Wall. When it comes to the characters themselves, not only do they have eye-candy designes, but also their animation is detailed and fluent.

However, the filmmakers never forget during the whole runtime that presentation is just a medium and it's the characters that engage the audience into the story. Even though there is a whole variety of characters in the movie, each of them is properly developed. I especially liked Kitty, as her determination in the investigation makes the story truly engaging and this is the part, where the true message of the story shines out. As the movie goes on, Folman attempts to coin the message about fighting with racial prejudice both in terms of Jews during World War II and the refugees in modern times. Though initially I had problems with seeing the consistency, the director manages to acheive it at the end of the movie.

All sorts of anti-prejudice media, from books to movies, will always be of great importance.

Where Is Anne Frank may be a good subject for conversation between children and their parents. Both groups may take an important lesson of tolerance out of it. In modern times, this is why such stories are of great value.

Let me finish by quoting the dialogue I remembered from the movie the most.

"Anne: Why do people hate us?

Kitty: Because they always need some scapegoat."