“Her face painted with yellow chalk, she tried to pass herself off as a patient with jaundice.”

“Holed up with thirty others, in a bunker devoid of any sunlight and made for fifteen, he did what was necessary to avoid detection.”

These are just two excerpts from the six emotionally charged and inspirational stories of endurance that can be found in the documentary, “Video Portraits of Survival.” Created by UCSB students in the Film Studies Dept., with the help of the Jewish Federation, the film is set to premiere at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival this week.

This riveting documentary tells the story of six Holocaust survivors who all reside in Santa Barbara. The interviews featured detail the histories of each survivor while making it quite clear that these people have all gone on to thrive in their new lives. By sharing their stories today, the interviewees seek to educate others of the dangers that hatred creates.

Referencing the genocides in Rwanda and Sudan as examples, the survivors make it clear that hatred is still present today, nearly sixty years after the end of the Holocaust. For this reason, it is increasingly important that all Holocaust survivors have their stories documented and shared, in order for the world to hopefully learn from its mistakes and prevent future travesties.

The documentary is broken up into six short films, each encompassing one interview. Different students tackled each segment, all of which feature original scores. Seeing as it was a student production, one can assume the budget was very low, and this becomes evident many times throughout the movie. The sequencing seems off at times, and attempts at dramatic word splicing against a black background come out looking more like a PowerPoint presentation.

Still, the importance of the documentary is in the context, which is nailed down flawlessly. The moving stories told are certain to stay with viewers for years, and they would not have been recorded if it were not for the students involved. While many feel this is a topic that has already been exhausted on the film market, “Video Portraits of Survival” does an excellent job in bringing something fresh and new to the screen; it is a documentary that is as educational as it is enjoyable to watch.