In 1945, the world was left to ponder devastating wartime atrocities and inevitable questions of how to navigate criminal prosecutions and reparations. The Nuremberg Trials were held to bring Nazi war criminals to justice. Ophüls interviews many involved in this crucial moment in history and in doing so, unpacks humanities relationship to judgement and perspective.
American lawyer Telford Taylor who was a Prosecuting Counsel at Nuremberg features within the film and his book, Nuremberg and Vietnam: An American Tragedy offers another trajectory for The Memory of Justice. Ophüls expands his examination of justice and culpability by posing a contemporary question; specifically the role of the American government and citizens in relationship to the Vietnam War.
Forty years after its initial release, The Memory of Justice was restored by the Film Foundation, an organisation founded by Martin Scorsese to protect and preserve motion picture history. Through the restoration process Marcel Ophüls was able to make minor changes to the film and see his masterpiece reinvigorated for new audiences.
At a time in history when notions of justice and judgement are at a crucial tipping point, The Memory of Justice has never been more necessary.
Restored by the Academy Film Archive in association with Paramount Pictures and The Film Foundation.
Restoration funding provided by The Material World Charitable Foundation, Righteous Persons Foundation, and The Film Foundation.
Julia Wayne’s visit is presented in association with the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery
ACMI and AIDC Presents
The Memory of Justice
In 1976 Marcel Ophüls (The Sorrow and the Pity) embarked on an epic meditation on justice in the 20th century. Using the Nuremberg Trials as a launch point, Memory of Justice considers ideas of retribution and judgement from Nazi Germany to conflicts in Algeria and Vietnam.
Newly restored by the Film Foundation, join their Educational Consultant, Julia Wayne who will introduce the screening and provide some insights into this fascinating and essential film.