Probably one of the greatest movies ever. Ferdinand Marian gives an amazing multifaceted performance as the cunning but magnetic Suss. He is corrupt, egoistic and not scared of whatever evil it takes for him to increase his wealth and political power. Think of Sakler’s family (opioids). Heinrich George is brilliant like always. Mesmerizing costumes and filming technique. I suggested this film mother and my uncle who are children of holocaust survivors to watch it. They enjoyed it.
Allow me to express a couple of ideas and observations that you are unlikely to find elsewhere.
The main point of the movie is on the 14th minute in a dialog with Dorothea Sturm. “Where do you feel at home? Everywhere? You have no homeland? I do. The world. Nonsense. You must feel happiest somewhere.” This is so true for a lot of Jews even with Israel in existence. Rootless cosmopolitans (Stalin’s term) and foreign elements having no connection to their birthplace with beliefs that Homeland/Motherland is not where you roots are, nor is it your place of birth but rather where its most comfortable to live at any given moment. This raises serious issues regarding loyalty to the state of birth or residence. I know one can collect multiple examples of Jews making sacrifices for their countries of birth, but I think that the overall tendency is to the contrary and the behavior of American Jewry is the proof.
Also, historically some Jews were notorious for disregarding all moral principles while exploiting populations on behalf of local sovereigns. I guess this is following the perplexing interpretation from the Old Testament, where Joseph’s agrarian policies, enriching Pharaoh at the expense of locals, was presented in a positive light. Here is a direct quote from the Humash (page 265): “Joseph’s master plan was to impoverish the Egyptians and make them totally dependent upon the king “. Joseph also instituted Soviet style collective farms in Egypt. This was exactly what Oppenheimer did (besides for collective farms) and it was the main source of hostility towards Jews for centuries.
As to the main accusation against Oppenheimer in the movie regarding seducing and abusing gentile women, it really not necessary to look at his biography in the 18th century. Just look at Weinstein and Epstein. Sound familiar? What about semi-literate shtetl Jews, who founded Hollywood studios and used their positions to abuse and seduce mostly gentile woman…?