The Roma – often referred to as gypsies – have a long history of persecution in Europe that dates at least as far back as Vlad the Impaler. In pop culture, they are romanticized as wandering musicians or thieving villains.
Director Aaron Yeger seeks to offer a fuller understanding in this documentary that was filmed in 11 countries and features dozens of interviews with experts on Roma culture and genocide, as well as many Holocaust survivors.
The first half of the film provides a myth-dispelling look at Roma history and culture. From there, it focuses largely on the Roma holocaust, a gruesome story that is relatively little known within the wider history of the 20th century’s greatest evil.
Although no single documentary could give a comprehensive account of the Roma’s culture and history, Yeger’s doc offers a sobering, often harrowing understanding of a people and the workings of genocide.