Fate Did Not Let Me Go
John Osborne, in his very last play, Déjàvu, sought to set the record straight about the Angry Young Man of his first: “‘What’s he angry about?’ they used to ask. Anger is not about... It comes into the world in grief not grievance. It is mourning the unknown, the loss of what went before without you, it’s the love another time but not this might have sprung on you, and greatest loss of all, the deprivation of what, even as a child, seemed to be irrevocably your own, your country, your birthplace, that, at least, is as tangible as death.”
Valli Ollendorff typed her now-famous letter just before being shipped out to Theresienstadt. In it, among other things, she tells her grown son this: “May the memory of your parents’ house and your childhood shine like a bright, lucky star over you, my beloved, good, precious boy.”
Curiously, or perhaps incuriously, the filmmakers give no account of the 43-year delay in the letter’s arrival.