Kielce, Poland, was the site of Europe’s last Jewish pogrom — in 1946. The militia, soldiers, and ordinary townspeople killed over 40 Holocaust survivors seeking shelter in a downtown building and injuring 80 more. As news of the pogrom spread across Poland, Jews fled the country. The Kielce pogrom became a symbol of Polish post-war antisemitism in the Jewish world. Under communism, the pogrom was a forbidden subject in Poland, but it was never forgotten.
In a free Poland, Bogdan Białek, a Catholic Pole, journalist, and psychologist, emerged to talk publicly about the issue. Over time, with great effort, he persuaded the people of Kielce to confront this painful history. Beginning as a solitary figure, he confronted the deepest prejudices in his fellow citizens, and strove to reconnect Kielce with the outside Jewish community. The effort costs him dearly. Bogdan’s Journey was filmed in Poland, Israel, and the United States over almost a decade. Its two directors, a Polish Catholic and a Jewish American, work together to tell a unique story about one man and how he redeemed 70 years of bitter, contested memories — by telling the truth with love.
Note: There are some playback issues at the beginning of this trailer, but they clear up after five seconds.