The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
The Walking Dead
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All Critics (32)
| Top Critics (8)
| Fresh (28)
| Rotten (4)
A solid, spellbinding drama based closely on real history, which along the way offers a not-so-subtle commentary on the diverse, immigrant-rich society of contemporary France.
A passionate act of remembrance.
This is a fact-based story of the French resistance who had to fight not only the Germans but their own people.
There's no sense of the oppression France felt under Nazi rule. It's all just play-acting in period-specific attire. You can almost hear the AD calling lunch.
Virginie Ledoyen stars as Missak's impossibly lovely, stalwart wife, and a troupe of supporting players give life to the men and women who died not for the miserable France of that moment, but for the vision of what it could be.
His film is always fascinating and is a crucial, stirring addition to the cinema about wartime France.
The Army of Shadows may be a revisionist and overly romantic depiction of the French Resistance during WWII, but at least it's a compelling fairy tale, something that cannot be said about The Army of Crime.
... Guédiguian punctures a lot of myths about the face-and the motives-of the French resistance.
... Guediguian, working with a screenplay by Serge Le Peron and Gilles Taurand, gives the good old-fashioned epic treatment to an important chapter of history.
A young and talented cast put energy into this timeless story of the citizen warriors of occupied France.
Robert Guediguian makes a fascinating Altmanesque character study of a mixed group of foreign resistance fighters (called the "FTP-MOI") working in Paris to undermine the Nazi-led removal of Jews during World War II.
Impressive recreation of World War II French Resistance movement, marked by a deep humanity and piercing intelligence.
"I think of a hero as someone who understands the degree of responsibility that comes with his freedom." --Bob Dylan
There is something deeply admirable in trying to honor the lives of the international resistance in France(some of who also fought in the Spanish Civil War) during the Nazi occupation, showing that the struggle was bigger than any one country. At the same time, they fed into Nazi propaganda by almost confirming that there is an international Communist conspiracy, thus the title. If contradictory impulses was the biggest fault of "Army of Crime," there still might be enough to salvage here, but a distressing lack of focus and depth dooms the movie to mediocrity.
"Army Of Crime" starts with a roll call of the dead with several characters in custody, allowing French authorities to impress the Nazis when it comes to torture.(Anybody who receives a compliment from a Nazi is surely going to hell.) Rewind to 1942 when French Jews feel they have little to fear yet and Germany has just invaded the Soviet Union. In response to that, Marcel Rayman(Robinson Stevenin) has taken to the streets to paint hammer and sickles to show his displeasure of the occupation with his friend Henri Krasucki(Adrien Jolivet) occasionally in tow, before escalating to acts of violence. But none of that is as interesting as the story of Missak Manouchian(Simon Abkarian), a survivor of the Armenian genocide and resistance leader, his life allowing the movie to make a direct connection between atrocities. Sadly, he disappears from the narrative for stretches, allowing for other business to take center stage like assignations and swimming meets, not allowing any narrative momentum to build.
Leave it to the French to make a movie like this slow, and tedious. But, it is a good depiction of what it's like to live under Nazi occupation. Ordinary, non-violent citizens become a resistance group against evil. In this case, based on true events, people become incredibly courageous and commit acts of revenge against the Nazis. But are finally undone by the French collaborators, in the government and public. Beautifully filmed, and acted.
Long, flat telling of hardly an original tale of WWII French resistance. It tries to encompass so many characters that it fails to develop any of them beyond stock stereotypes.
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