In the film, Almost Peaceful by Michel Deville, we saw how different Jewish Parisians attempted to restart their lives and seek happiness after World War II. These people tried to move on in their lives, while still remembering their experiences from the Holocaust.
Albert, who is a character in the movie, was the tailing shop owner. When he was in a concentration camp, he mentioned that he would make a plan of how he would work out his tailoring. After the Holocaust, not only did he re-open his shop, but he also kept the people over there working effortlessly. Albert bought a painting from Madame Sarah only because he wanted to show his future generations what it was like back in the Holocaust. Albert and his wife Lea sent their two children to summer camps so they could lead a normal life as well.
A second example from the movie is the character Leon. He has a wife, Jacqueline, and she is pregnant with their second child. This shows that they are also moving on in their lives. Leon jokes around all the time with everyone at the tailor shop and is a great actor as well. Leon had lost many of his family members in the Holocaust and now he has the desire to have a big family. For example, when Jacqueline gives birth to their second child, Leon gets excited about his family photo (with future generations).
The third character that is trying to rekindle his capacity for happiness is Maurice. He is a very lonely man who seeks a prostitute, named Simone, to fill his sexual desires. Maurice goes to only her each time and this shows that he is looking for comfort and the warmth to get rid of his loneliness. As the movie goes on, Maurice becomes more open to Simone. For example, he took her to a coffee shop and he told her about his past life. Gradually, Maurice's relationship with Simone gets stronger and he finally expresses his feelings and all the sadness in his heart.
A last example would be the character Joseph. When he was small, his parents got arrested and he ran away. His parents didn't want to catch any attention so they didn't look back at him. Joseph went to an interview and he met the man who arrested his parents. However, Joseph wasn't scared; in fact he confronted the man. Even though Joseph felt sad about being separated from his parents, he felt happy deep inside because his parents let him free. Joseph just ran and didn't look back. Joseph tells the man that he will become a writer and write about his experience. This shows that he is ambitious to follow his dreams and brave enough to write his experience, even if it means recalling the painful truth.
The four characters Joseph, Leon, Albert, and Maurice, from the movie Almost Peaceful, try to restart their lives in different ways. Their objective wasn't to forget what happened to them during the Holocaust; they wanted to keep that in mind so that they could gather the courage to move on. After all, one's strength is more visible after they have tolerated more.
by Mawra Malik