In Heaven Underground: The Weissensee Jewish Cemetery Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: In Heaven, Underground: The Weissensee Jewish Cemetery is an enchanting journey into history that celebrates life and the immortality of memories. North of Berlin's noisy city centre, surrounded by a jungle of trees and lush foliage, lies the peaceful and secluded 130-year-old Weissensee Jewish Cemetery, the oldest Jewish cemetery still in use in Europe. Its one hundred acres hold 115,000 graves and a meticulous archive record. The cemetery has never closed, and was one of the few institutions to remain in Jewish hands during the Nazi regime. Award-winning director Britta Wauer's charming portrait creates a serene experience following a delightful array of characters from around the world: mourners, tourists, a young family residing at the cemetery, a third-generation gravedigger and an ornithologist studying rare birds of prey. (Seventh Art Releasing) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 7
  2. Negative: 1 out of 7
  1. Reviewed by: Alison Willmore
    Nov 16, 2011
    Most people wouldn't expect a film that's inherently about death (and, to a lesser extent, the Holocaust) to be uplifting, but the gentle, tender documentary In Heaven, Underground ultimately achieves it.
  2. Reviewed by: David DeWitt
    Nov 17, 2011
    The sense of place may be expected, but it's also poetic and exquisite.
  3. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Jan 12, 2012
    It may not sound like it, but In Heaven, Underground: The Weissensee Jewish Cemetery is a playful, poetic and all-around charming documentary, an off-center look at an unusual institution.
  4. Reviewed by: V.A. Musetto
    Nov 18, 2011
    An oddity: an upbeat film about a cemetery.
  5. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Nov 15, 2011
    As a micro-to-macro tour of Germany's fraught relationship with its Jewish citizens, In Heaven Underground couldn't be more connective; as a straight doc, its aesthetic choices couldn't be more confusing.
  6. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Nov 15, 2011
    The film is flecked with moments of interest, though this decidedly minor and not particularly cinematographic affair is clearly best suited to television.
  7. Reviewed by: Jay Weissberg
    Nov 14, 2011
    Her (Wauer) attempt to relieve uncomfortable events with happy stories makes for a disturbing superficiality, and a "make your own Jewish grave" student project is plain offensive. Score is omnipresent and insufferable.