The Tattooist Of Auschwitz Review

The Tattooist Of Auschwitz Review

Stan has released their newest original in the incredibly moving The Tattooist Of Auschwitz.

Our story begins in 2003 when Lali Sokolov (Harvey Keitel) is living a lonely life in Melbourne. With the end of his life approaching, he wants to finally tell his story. Enter nurse Heather Morris (Melanie Lynsky). 

Through flashback, Lali recalls being taken as a Slovakian Jew during World War Two to the concentration camps, where all humanity was left at the gates. You worked hard, lived off limited food, huddled together in bunks, and were prone to diseases. And the slightest rebuttal ends with you being shot. 

A young Lali (Jonah Hauer-King) is offered a job as one of the Tätowierers, tattooists who ink identification numbers onto their fellow prisoners. At first, he refused the offer but eventually accepts. It’s a horrible job, but it’s the only way to survive – “I was 26 and I wanted to live. They offered me a way and I took it.”

The job has its advantages though, including nicer food and a room all to himself, instead of the cramped bunks and meager rations. It also means he has slightly easier treatment from the guards, most notably Stefan Baretzki (Jonas Nay). And then, Lali meets Gita (Anna Próchniak), and it’s love at first sight while he’s tattooing her.

Throughout the six episodes, we follow Lali and Gita’s story, which is a ray of hope in the darkness of Auschwitz. As Lali tells his story to Heather, it’s clear that the horror still lingers, even if memory is at times unreliable.  

Keitel and Linskey perform beautifully, ensuring some light seeps through in a series of such dark subject material. But tis Haur-King who does the bulk of the work, giving the material his all and delivering one of the year’s best performances alongside a shining Próchniak. 

Penned by Jacquelin Perske, adapting Heather Morris’ bestselling novel, The Tattooist Of Auschwitz is dark and emotionally draining at times, but a series to watch. 

4 Stars

The Tattooist Of Auschwitz is now streaming on Stan.


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