For the romance fans, Love, It Was Not is one different movie in the genre. As we are slowly stepping out of the love season, we are still not getting over the romantic movies, love songs, and Valentine-themed films. Love It Was Not is another great addition to your watch-list on FAYVO.

The film follows a tragic love story between a prisoner and a Nazi. Also, the movie shows a bit of uncertainty between good and evil at some crucial points.

The movie has a dramatic romance plot, where the beautiful and lively Helena Citron is taken to Auschwitz as a teenager. She's been transported to the concentration camp and soon finds unlikely support under the protection of Franz Wunsch. The guy is a barely older SS officer who falls in love with her and her magnetic singing voice. But wait, what's the twist and the climax?

Let's talk about it after watching the trailer:



Director: Maya Sarfaty

Genre(s): History, War, Documentary

Starring: Frank Wunsch, Helena Citron, Roza Citron

Runtime: 86 min


What does the story say?

The opening scene and the dialogues both begin with a photograph. It is an old photo of Helena at Auschwitz. She is dressed as a prisoner in striped clothes, but she looks surprisingly healthy. The weird thing is, despite being a prisoner, she is smiling at the camera. The picture was taken by Wunsch.

It was later revealed by Wunsch's daughter, Dagmar, that he made multiple copies of that photo just to cut them up and place Helena in different clothing and the other beautiful surroundings.

P.S. We have to appreciate the director's idea here to make brilliant use of a more complex photomontage technique to illustrate dramatic events within the story.

Love It Was Not (2020) - IMDb

Credits: imdb

The story is set back in the 1940s when the first group of women arrived at the notorious concentration camp. Helena was one of them, and she soon attracted the attention of Franz Wunsch, the young, high-ranking Austrian officer. At first, the office fell for her singing voice when she was performing at a popular German song called "Love It Was Not." Wunsch was instantly hooked and started showing Helena personal kindness. When she noticed the special care and attention by the office, she started calling upon him to grant favors that would spare the lives of many of those around her, including that of her sister, Roza.

While their feelings were, by all accounts, mutual, Wunsch got obsessed with taking Helena out of prison. For that, he used crop Helena's face out of photos taken at Auschwitz and edited/pasted it over pictures of other people in amazing locations.



The Good Parts:

'Love It Was Not' is not merely a love story, but it provides a deep look into the lives of Helena and Franz during the war. That was a tough time for Helena at the notorious concentration camp. There were different ranks of prisoners when Franz and Helena's story began. The SS officer Wunsch was a kind man by heart, and therefore, he didn't treat women with the same inhumanity as the men.

While watching the documentary, you can clearly see the humanity in the eyes of the SS officer. He provided medical assistance to a few prisoners and helped them recover.

The movie is like a classic 'love at first sight story. The sentimental officer Franz developed an immediate love emotion for the young prisoner. You can relate it to the dramatic, romantic film from the era.

Talking about the uniqueness, the film makes creative use of historical facts in its cinematography. Instead of any editing or dramatic recreations of events, you'll see pictorial connections involving the use of authentic photographs from the 40s through the 60s.


The Bad Things:

On the whole, Love It was Not is an interesting watch, especially when we have thousands of Netflix movies. It is an incisive, engaging film that has a few downsides.

The only thing that's vague or questionable in the whole movie is Helena's background. We can see her life experiences before and after her time at Auschwitz, but there's something that feels lacking. There's something that's not explained and left mysterious about her.


Our Take: Watch it or not?

Based on the audience's score and the overall reviews, you must give it a try, but only if you have an interest in history, historical romance, and war times. One of the biggest strengths of this documentary is the cinematography. There's no advanced technology used, but the use of real photographs. These realistic configurations bring the viewers close to the movie.

Also, FAYVO always suggests real recommendations. Be it a comedy movie, a horror TV show, or a superhero movie. See what your friends say about it. Love It Was Not is a documentary that asks more questions than it answers. If you watch it, make plans with your friends to have a conversation afterward. You'll need it!

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