Every family has a secret or two. During the course of their twisty documentary, Aida's Secrets, Israeli filmmakers Alon and Shaul Schwarz uncover several, all revolving around a Polish woman named Aida. First, there's their uncle, Izak Szewelwicz, who grew up in Israel with what he thought was his biological family until a neighbor told him the truth: he was adopted. In the wake of World War II, his mother, Aida, had deposited him at the Bergen-Belsen displaced persons camp and emigrated to Canada.
His adoptive parents encouraged him to reach out to her, and they formed a bond, but she refused to talk about his father. With the aid of a genealogical researcher, Alon and Shaul lead Izak to answers—and to Shep, the Winnipeg-based brother whose existence comes as a welcome surprise. Once reunited, Izak and Shep, who is visually impaired, find that the truth of their parentage is more complicated than they expected. In the end, this isn't just a story about one family fractured by the Holocaust, but about the German nurse and the South African kindergarten teacher who would affect the trajectory of the clan. If families are mysteries at the best of times, the chaos of the post-war years—especially when philanderers are involved—can obfuscate things beyond measure.