An Irrepressible Woman

Dir. Laurent Heynemann | 103 min
Narrative France 2019
French with English subtitles

France, 1940. Defying logic, Janot Reichenbach, a wealthy Jewish woman, decides to not flee the German-occupied country with her husband and son.

Instead, she joins socialist politician and three-time Prime Minister Léon Blum, whom she fell madly in love when she was only sixteen and was kept apart from for all these years. Determined to stay with Blum at all costs, she follows him as he is moved from Vichy France to Buchenwald, where they are both imprisoned.

Elsa Zylberstein (I’ve Loved You So Long) shines as a woman who is willing to sacrifice all she has for love.

-Note adapted from the UK Jewish Film Festival

Rental includes a recorded conversation with producer Nelly Kafsky, moderated by historian Daniel Lee which will automatically play after the film.


Nelly Kafsky is a producer and actress, known for A Model Employee (2002), Free Zone (2006) and Victor Young Perez (2013).

Daniel Lee is a historian of the Second World War and a specialist in the history of Jews in France and North Africa during the Holocaust. He is a senior lecturer in modern history at Queen Mary, University of London, and the author of The SS Officer’s Armchair: Uncovering the Hidden Life of a Nazi (2020) and Pétain’s Jewish Children (2014). As a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Thinker, Lee is a regular broadcaster on radio. He lives in north London.

Genres and Topics


Film rentals are $11 per household ($9.50 for the film and $1.50 additional platform fee). All programs are accessible through Eventive, JxJ’s virtual cinema platform. For unlimited access to all JxJ Festival events, purchase a JxJ All Access Pass ($90 with no additional fees).


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