Produced by Andrzej Wajda, this 55-minute film probes the massacre of almost fifteen thousand Polish officers during World War II. For a long time, this atrocity was attributed to the Nazis, but it was really the work ...展开of Red Army. (A title states that the film was made before the truth was publicly acknowleged.) There are three parts: in (1) "Voyage", children of the victims travel to the place, mainly the camp of Kozielsk, which a survivor of Katyn describes: forty-five hundred were interned there, then led to the forest, shot, and put in a mass grave. In (2) "Politique", after seeing archival footage of corpses, we learn that Churchill allegedly asked the head of the Polish government in exile to say the perpetrators were German, not Soviet. Almost as bad is the fact that the U.S. Secret Service destroyed (on Roosevelt's orders) papers that the Poles had sent him about the real murderers - even before he read them. In (3) "Witnesses", we meet Wanda, the daughter of a murdered Polish officer. She tries to get people who live near the forest to talk, but they are still frightened. However, another woman cajoles (in Russian) her old father to tell the truth. He admits that he was forced to sign the opposite of what happened at Katyn. The film reveals that the Stalinists were just as capable as the Nazis of cold-blooded carnage - even of their own allies.
Annette Insdorf - "Indelible shadows: film and the Holocaust"