Hannah Arendt - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Hannah Arendt Reviews

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July 5, 2014
This was a brilliant film of a type you rarely see any longer. Today it is all Superheros all the time. Here is a film about a political philosopher, a Jew, a Nazi survivor, and a driven intellectual obsessed with the nature of evil. The film centers around the trial of Adolf Eichmann and what this meant to Hannah Arendt, Jewish communities, Israel, and the broader world. Well known intellectuals and philosophers pop in and out of the film...if the audience is not well read they'll have no idea of what is going on or who these people are. The film does not make it easy for those that are unread, poorly read, and that is wonderful. For the first time in a long time, I did not feel as though I were being spoken down to. Highly recommended for anyone that enjoys thinking and not just experiencing.
June 5, 2014
After a slow buildup it grabs you by the throat and doesn't let go. Essential for history buffs. Sukowa's talents shine.
May 28, 2014
Barbara Sukowa is fantastic in the title role in this portrayal of Hannah Arendt's famous account of the 1961 trial of former Nazi Adolf Eichmann. Intelligent and challenging cinema. Recommended!
May 25, 2014
The performances make this worth seeing. The story is very interesting and meaningful until about 3/4 the way through. Then, it lingers and lingers and lingers over those 10 pages (don't want to spoil) without ever committing to what they meant to the communities at odds with each other. Rather, the movie focuses on the fervor. Was it too controversial for the filmmakers?
May 23, 2014
Great message about the banality of evil but the banality of the storyline makes for a film that goes on too long without adding much.
May 1, 2014
I love the story and the point of view. What, as usual, bothers me is in attempting to capture the NYC of the 60's, the opening view of the skyline is wrong (having lived in NYC in the '60's). One other complaint - the Portrayal of Americans is stereotypical and awkward. And the 'American' acting is stilted and terrible. That said, the story is worth getting past these jarring inauthenticities.
½ April 30, 2014
Great acting. The screenplay cleverly renders very difficult and complex subjects, and treats it's fascinating theme and character with both intelligence and compassion. Von Trotta is usually heavy handed, here she restrains herself, and even if she abuses a bit on the image of Arendt silently smoking and deeply reflecting, the result is a very effective portrait of a philosopher and thinker.
April 25, 2014
Totally rocked! Her argument about the power of the banality in both apathy and rage as a "default" position of humanity demonstrated beautifully throughout the film. "To think means to engage in a dialogue with one's own mind.:" She's a "Leanne Gal"!
½ April 13, 2014
This is a film of absolute substance about the woman hired by The New Yorker to cover the rial in Israel of Eichmann.
While all around her are clambering to be told that he was the complete devil, she refers to him as a "nobody", a bureaucrat with not interest outside the operation of his department.
This leads to her most famous quote, that of "the banality of evil".
The film is unglamorous and straightforward.
It is unflattering and it remains in your mind.
The idea that ordinary people will simply do as they are told... just obey orders... especially if they have sworn to be part of an organisation (be it military, national or bureaucratic) is one that has become a major part of life through the second half of the 20th century and we still reap the results.
See the film. It is good to see such unflinching intelligence.
February 26, 2014
Don't watch this by yourself. Watch it with a group of friends and then discuss the philosophy of the "banality of evil" afterward. The movie is a good history lesson, a good philosophy lesson, and a reminder of our constant need for vigilance. Favorite line: "To try to understand is not the same thing as forgiveness."
February 15, 2014
"Hannah Arndt" is really quite brilliant - both the German philosopher and journalist, and the film portraying her writing about Eichmann and teaching in post-war Germany. If you don't see the WHOLE film you will miss its overall values, profound but subtle meanings, and its most salient historical features. She could easily be compared to Einstein for her independence and credibility. Hannah Arendt and Karl Marx were among the more notable Jewish Philosophers and both were natives of Germany. Whereas Karl Marx was an indirect follower / student of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, Hannah Arendt was actually a direct student - and most prized - by Martin Heidegger. Arguably Hannah treats Heidegger, (a self-described Nazi sympathizer), the way a number of Jewish leaders (whom she openly questions) treated the Final Solution Nazis (like Adolf Eichmann). Heidegger teaches her to think and prepares her for the loneliness of teaching philosophy - even while he betrays humanity and morality. Hannah is just great!! A truly well done film.
February 14, 2014
Pffff. This is not the Hannah Arendt of her books; this is the Hannah Arendt of hearsay and philosophical gists. Maybe rename it "Ayn Rand" and it will make more sense.
February 12, 2014
This slow, meditative and reactionary drama is about real life German-Jewish philosopher Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) as she covered the 1961 trial of ex-Nazi Adolf Eichmann and wrote about it for The New Yorker magazine. Her ability to disconnect herself and personal feelings from what she saw and heard while writing her account created a firestorm of controversy as she relayed her philosophical thoughts to the masses regarding Eichmann's persona and actions. While people believed him to be an outright monster, Hannah wanted to dive deeper and find an excuse of why he was who he was which some people saw as her defending his reprehensible actions. She really was not ... people simply couldn't understand her words/writing which isn't surprising considering the public's horrid lack of reading comprehension. People want to see what the want to see and Hannah simply dared others that there might be either more or less there. The cast is comprised of mostly unfamiliar faces with the exception being two time Oscar nominee Janet McTeer (Tumbleweeds, Albert Nobbs) as one of Hannah's New York socialite friends. The film is too slow for most audiences but I did find it an interesting watch.
½ February 1, 2014
A terrific foreign movie - sadly, not nominated for an Oscar - is the German director Margarethe von Trotta's "Hannah Arendt." A.O. Scott, writing in "The New York Times," gave it a 5-star review (with which I wholeheartedly agree), and one of the points he makes is that there has rarely been a film so good at showing the power (and labor) of thinking. It's true. We feel the intensity of Arendt's intellect in every frame of the film. As portrayed by the marvelous Barbara Sukowa ("Rosa Luxembourg"), she is a dynamo of logic and fortitude. If you don't know, Hannah Arendt was a well-known 20th-Century German-Jewish political philosopher, perhaps best remembered today for coining the phrase "banality of evil" in her (in)famous book (first published as a series of "New Yorker" articles) about the 1961 Adolph Eichmann trial, "Eichmann in Jerusalem." Von Trotta has created more than a biopic; this is a portrait of a truth-seeker - compromised by the details of her personal life though she may have been (she had been a student and lover of Martin Heidegger, who later joined the Nazi party) - who forged her own path, critics be damned! It's a great film about a great woman, by a great female director.
½ February 1, 2014
This movie is interesting in it's content. After seeing the documentary called The Specialist about Eichmann's trial, this flick is a great follow up on the topic. It is hard to tell the story of a philosopher, for their lives are made of long introspective periods of thinking and stand often as uninteresting. This movie does not go deep enough on the theories of Arendt and is lacking a personal story to tell, it gets overall very superficial. Not a must see, but interesting to watch anyways.
January 31, 2014
2012: Toronto International Film Festival Official Selection
2012: New York Jewish Film Festival Official Selection
2013: Lola Award for Best Actress for Barbara Sukowa and Silver Lola for Best Film, Deutscher Filmpreis
2013: Guild Film Award-Gold from the Guild of German Art House Cinemas
2013: Audience Award for Best Narrative Film, Women + Film Voices Film Festival, Denver
2013: Best Actress for Barbara Sukowa, Bavarian Film Awards
2013: Best Actress nomination for Barbara Sukowa, European Film Awards
January 31, 2014
A thought provoking biopic with its focus on the reporting of the Eichmann trial and the coining of the phrase "the banality of evil" and her apparent condemnation of the Jewish collaboration.
½ January 28, 2014
Excellent movie about a complex character who tried to understand and be objective about the concept of violence and evil.
January 15, 2014
A mesmerizing look at the brilliant mind of intellectual Hannah Arendt, whose writings on Nazi Adolf Eichmann's trial in the early 1960s coined the term "banality of evil" and unleashed a storm of angry debate about whether she was blaming the victims of the Holocaust. The film focuses on just 4 years in Arendt's life, with occasional short flash-backs to help us better understand her life experiences and the arc of her thinking. Since her writings still evoke impassioned debates even 50 years later, this film gives the debate an important and thought-provoking context, and forces us to examine the true meaning of evil and society's role in facing it down. Everyone should see this one!
January 7, 2014
subject matter provoking...see it
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