The Shop on Main Street

It’s actually named after Hlinka, the Fascists run everything, the brother-in-law wears a uniform, the marching song is “both fists full” or the equivalent.

Even such a shlub as yourself, who want no part of it, can get sucked in, that’s half the point.

The other, spin it how you like with politicians and press doctors, some things are better left alone.

There’s the new pyramid in the square, Slovakia is itself under Hitler. Lies in the town square, under the sun.

A henpecked carpenter is made “arisator” of a textile shop on Hlinka Square, Jews may no longer own businesses in the Slovakstatt. The old woman is deaf, “probably doesn’t even know there’s a war on”, and is told he’s a distant relation come to be her shop assistant. Other Jews in town give him the profit Mrs. Lautmann doesn’t make, so his greedy ignorant superstitious wife will be satisfied.

They come for the Jews in earnest, all except Mrs. Lautmann, who dies at the arisator’s hands in a mischance, small-town life having slowly risen to hysteria like the pogroms and witch hunts of yore. He hangs himself, dreaming it all away in their Sunday clothes, he and the aged Jewess, a flight into Egypt.

There is an admirable precision in the first scenes, which the directors do not care in this instance to pursue.