On the occasion of the Hungarian National Day for the Victims of Communism (February 25th) the Balassi Institute – Hungarian Cultural Center in New York, together with the Owner Organizations of the Hungarian House of New York: the American Hungarian Library and Historical Society, the Hungarian Scout Associations in Exteris, and the Széchenyi István Society organized the event of the screening of and panel discussion on
CONDEMNED TO LIVE
Directed by Noémi Veronika Szakonyi and Máté Artur Vincze
Saturday, February 24, 2017, 6 pm
Hungarian House of New York
213 E 82 Street, New York, NY, 10028
Condemned to Live (Hungarian: Életre ítéltek) is a Hungarian documentary by Noémi Veronika Szakonyi and Máté Artur Vincze, made by the commission of the Hungarian Institute for National Heritage. Picturing retribution in Hungary after the crushing of the Revolution and War of independence of 1956, the film introduces the infamous Little Quarter, a used-to-be execution site through the recollections of former victims. Out of the four survivors appearing in the movie (Jenő Fónay, János Puchert, László Regéczy-Nagy and Mária Wittner), three had escaped from the rope at the last minute, but many of the former prisoners were executed. The 53-minute long movie shows these characters in alternating order through four stories appearing in their own homes, and the chronologically progressive story unfolding from their narratives gradually leads the viewer from the past to the present.
Condemned to Live uncovers shockingly the inexhaustibility of this trauma and the unstoppable constraint of the survivors to remember. Condemned to Live were cast on several Hungarian television programs and it was selected in the competition program of the 2016 Hungarian Film Week, and have been screened in the United States at several events and festivals to great success.