About the Film
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“When there is great suffering, you don't ask questions. You help.” – Elisabeth Eidenbenz
In the early 1940s, refugees from all over Europe sought shelter in the south of France on the northern Catalan Spanish border, fleeing persecution from the Nazis and Franco’s regime, and the horrid conditions of the Vichy camps and Spanish Civil War. Among them were countless pregnant women and their little children. The internment camps offered these families little to no medical attention nor protection from the cold. Enter young Red Cross nurse Elisabeth Eidenbenz, who transformed an old villa into a birth clinic to save hundreds of mothers and children from certain death.
Despite many hardships, the villa becomes a safe haven resounding with children's laughter until 1942, when the fascists try to shut it down, spurring Eidenbenz and her staff to bravely put their own lives in danger to avoid closure. This true inspiring story of Elisabeth Eidenbenz (1913-2011) and her female co-workers at the Elne maternity home reminds us that humanity can prevail, even in the most inhumane circumstances.
Starring Noémie Schmidt (L'ÉTUDIANTE ET MONSIEUR HENRI) Blanca Romero (UNDER SUSPICION), and Pep Anton Muñoz (GRAND HOTEL).
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Sílvia Quer is a director of Catalan television and film.