Parents' Guide to

My Best Friend Anne Frank

By Barbara Shulgasser-Parker, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Girl risks life to save best friend; violence, intense peril

Movie NR 2022 103 minutes
My Best Friend Anne Frank Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

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Is It Any Good?

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Kids say (2 ):

This movie tells an important story, but there's something off about My Best Friend Anne Frank. At the very least, the title is misleading. It's the story of the heroic Hannah, with Anne an oddly secondary, somewhat villainous character. She's the ungrateful friend compared to the saintly Hannah who risks her life to get food to her starving friend. The film takes liberties. Despite a scene in which Hannah digs through the separating wall to catch a glimpse of Anne, by her own account, Hannah never saw Anne. And camp scenes are confusing. Hannah is in a prison with privileges, which isn't really explained. Anne isn't as lucky.

Because so much of the film seems a miss-hit, it's impossible to tell if obvious underlying meanings are deliberate or unconscious. One can't be sure if the filmmakers even see the parallels of cruelties among young friends and the obvious echoes of adult cruelties played out during the war -- of one identity group against another, of racism, prejudice, and genocide. The petty and minor bad acts among young innocent girls line up exactly with the human flaws at the heart of Nazi bias, prejudice, exclusion, and brutality. The movie suggests, however unconsciously, that these are truths that people never seem to learn. Finally, Hannah Goslar has publicly stated that it's her life quest to keep telling the story of the Holocaust in order to prevent it from happening again. However flawed, the film serves at least that purpose.

Movie Details

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