This program is presented as part of the exhibition Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933 – 1945, in partnership with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
It is 1943 as Allied bombs are pelting Berlin and Lilly Wust (Maria Schrader) is bringing up four children as her husband Gunther (Detley Buck) is away fighting the war. Lilly has a few affairs to help with the absence of affection and being a loyal German she has a bust of Hitler prominently displayed in her house. When Lilly receives a love letter from an admirer who signs off as Jaguar she assumes it is from a man but is intrigued when she discovers that Felice Schragenheim (Maria Schrader) a local journalist is initiating the romance, a relationship forbidden in Germany. Awakened to a passion she has never known Lilly falls madly in love with Felice and moves to divorce her husband causing a mad storm of controversy as the relationship is a lesbian affair and Felice is Jewish and works against Germany as a resistance fighter. The two women make a love pact and try to block out the anti-Jewish and anti-Gay persecution of the Nazi movement, but their time is running out.
Based on Erica Fischer’s book, Aimée & Jaguar – A Love Story, Berlin 1943, chronicling the actual lives of Lilly Wust and Felice Schragenheim during that time. Before Erica Fischer’s bestseller, Lilly Wust was tracked down by the American journalist, author and noted Holocaust researcher, Charles Brady, who considered Lilly Wust a Holocaust victim. It was over a year and a half, however, before Wust was able to confide in Brady and tell him her whole story. They remained close friends for 20 years until her death in 2006. Fischer’s book, a copy of which may be obtained through Stonewall National Library, contains photos of the many letters shared between the two, and official correspondences post World War II with regard to Felice’s whereabouts.
Nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film.
Please note, due to the size of our current exhibition, this program will be held at ArtServe Auditorium, adjacent to Stonewall National Library & Archives.
Additional information available HERE.