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Summary

THE TIES THAT BIND is an experimental documentary about the filmmaker's mother, who was born and lived in southern Germany from 1920-1950. Through a mixture of personal anecdote and social history, she describes the rise of Nazism, the war years, and the Allied occupation, during which she met her future husband, an American soldier. The only voice we hear is that of this one "ordinary woman", while the images portray her current life in Chicago, her hometown before and during the war, New York Post headlines, contemporary peace marches, present day footage of Germany and much more. However, THE TIES THAT BIND breaks with the usual format of war documentaries, thus allowing a different portrait of the individual to emerge, while it reflects on the current political situation in America and the filmmaker's activities in relation to those issues. The film creates a powerful dialogue between past and present, between mother and daughter. But it is more than an interview of a mother by a daughter; it is a profound search for a definition of history, and a challenge to our own responsibility for the present.

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