“The day after I turned fifteen, I finally discovered what I’d always known . . . .”
So begins Philippe Grimbert’s novella of family secrets in World War II-era Europe. Now French director Claude Miller has adapted A Secret for the screen. It will be screened at the Summer Institute this Sunday at the Martha’s Vineyard Hebrew Center.
A Secret is a story of passion and guilt in troubled times, unfolding to the audience as young Francois uncovers the truth about his family’s past. His richly fantasized ideas about his parents’ life gradually unravel as he learns that before the war, his father Maxime (Patrick Bruel) was already married to Hannah (Ludivine Sagnier) when he fell madly in love with Francois’ mother Tania (Cécile de France). As a young Jewish couple living in Nazi-occupied France, Maxime and Tania were forced to make difficult choices to survive the war and the Holocaust after Hannah’s death. But that is just the beginning of the secrets that still haunt the family.
A Secret will screen this Sunday, July 19, at 7:30 p.m. at the Martha’s Vineyard Hebrew Center on Center street in Vineyard Haven. Admission is $10.