Joyeux NoŽl (Merry Christmas) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Joyeux NoŽl (Merry Christmas) Reviews

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January 12, 2017
Fabulous film based on real historical events.
January 4, 2017
I've been meaning to watch this film for quite a while now and only just got around to doing so this Christmas. So I started watching it late one evening before I realised the version I had came with no subtitles, whilst I do have a fair proficiency in French and German, it wasn't until about 20 minutes in that I realised that I wasn't completely aware of everything going on, so without second thoughts I popped online and placed an order for it. The following day I decided to give it a second chance, this time with subtitles intact, and I was mesmerised. An underrated gem of a film hailing from France, Joyeux NoŽl depicts the World War I Christmas truce between French, British and German soldiers in December 1914. Whilst the film primarily works wonders as a war flick, its central setting revolving around Christmas makes it the perfect candidate as a film for the holiday season.

The film opens with three school children, one from France, Britain and Germany, each relaying a patriotic speech to the camera, each one taught to belittle their enemy nation. This opening alone garnered my full attention, secondly the fact that director Christian Carion chose to allow each nation to converse in their own language (English, French and German) was a fantastic idea and one that we see so little in cinema, not just modern, but the classics too. It's fantastic to see a director respecting each country presented by allowing them to represent their nation through their own language, thus forming a sort of barrier between the group of soldiers upon their truce, that acts as a fun challenge of deciphering. As much as I respect American cinema, this is something many US filmmakers should look at pursuing rather than leaving every foreign national speaking with a strong American accent.

Carion further displays Joyeux NoŽl as an anti-war film, which are my all-time favourite in the war genre, something that displays the horrors and sorrow behind war rather than glorifying it and shining a lot on over patriotic soldiers who win the war to an overzealous musical score. This gives the film a very sympathetic view towards both the Allied and Central powers, but more than anything it promotes the themes of peace at Christmas. This is a powerful movie to definitely watch.
½ January 3, 2017
Un beau film qui montre l'humain des soldats.
December 25, 2016
Surprisingly good dramatization of under-taught story from WW1... I listened to a Christmas movie themed episode of the podcast Maltin On Movies - hosted by Leonard Maltin and his daughter, Jesse. On it they gave a glowing recommendation to this film, as a sleeper hit film that not many people would know about. After a year or so of batting around the idea of seeing it, I bought it on a whim. It turned out to be a pretty good decision to take a gamble on the film recommended by Maltin. On DVD but should be on Blu-Ray.
December 16, 2016
The most underrated Christmas movie out there!
July 19, 2016
A movie that is simultaneously heartwarming and heartbreaking.
February 1, 2016
Cuando se pierde la razon de pelear
January 16, 2016
A film about an extraordinary event, or more accurately events on the front of WWI, "the war to end all wars". Ethereal music, especially Stille Nacht & the new version of Ave Maria. In fact, Joyeux Noel is a hymn of peace on earth. The tendency is to compare it to other war films such as All Quiet on the Western Front, but it's not in the same genre - "Universal human goodwill transcends national dogmas"
Joyeux Noel has become one of our Christmas favourites.
January 8, 2016
When I saw a Nostalgia Critic video, he brought up Joyeux Noel which got me very curious to see it. The thing is however, I haven't got the chance to see it for years. Recently I actually found the film in the library and I got very excited to see it. I wished that I found it before Christmas because Joyeux Noel could've been a great end to Christmas of 2015, but I guess it's better late then never. The film is based on a historical event in WW1 where the soldiers actually make a truce to each other for Christmas Day. The story is really good and it makes me surprised that the stuff they did during the truce were still based on a true story. The acting is really good, and the writing is very well written. The movie shows the humanity in it which makes it feel very human, seeing that the soldiers from both sides are not that different from each other then they thought. The soundtrack is beautiful to listen to, and it gives in for some sentimental moments that are emotionally well done. It sets up the truce fairly well, and it makes you care about the soldiers from all the sides. There are some beautiful and memorable moments in it, and the movie did a great job of giving some screen-time with the soldiers. The movie made me felt very happy and I'm glad that I watched it as Joyeux Noel is one of the best war films that I've seen in years, and also one of the best Christmas movies that I've actually seen.
December 25, 2015
It is not a perfect film and it does feel too basic at time but What a beautiful and touching story To remember;a great story about hope.One day will man will all live at peace together,I believe it.
December 14, 2015
Excellent. Based on actual events, answers the question "What if they gave a war and nobody came?"
½ August 9, 2015
8/8/15 Cinema Now

This is a warm, beautiful and telling story of the horror and absurdity of war. The soldiers who fight it and die and suffer in it and the out of touch leaders who prosecute it but remain safe and far removed from the reality of it. This is a touching story made all the better because it is based on actual events on Christmas Eve, 1914.
April 5, 2015
This a film about WWII which tries to convice us that Europeans has no reason to fight againts each other, since they are the same nation.
February 14, 2015
The message that resonates here is that the power of love is much stronger than the power of hate.
½ January 13, 2015
Merry Christmas is fascinating and touching, but unfortunately too slow.

The fact that it's based on a true story really did manage to get my interest. This is not a classic war movie; it's much more than that. It's amazing to see people from different nations interact like we humans are all the same. It also gives a new and nuanced perspective on WW1. We see the war from 3 different angles, the French, Scottish and the Germans. The movie incapacitates our differences and show that we are all living on the same earth, and that we can get along. We only have to talk. I admit that there are some slow and less entertaining scenes in this movie, and I expected much more action. But I still enjoyed it!

Merry Christmas (Joyeux NoŽl in French) gets a 7/10.
January 11, 2015
6 stars!! Based on a true amazing, moving drama
January 9, 2015
This beautifully shot and touching film about the French, Scottish and German soldiers preparing to optn their presents on X-mas eve 1914 is not to be missed. It is superbly acted and written and can't help but touch the viewer emotionally. We loved this poignant and sentimental journey.
Super Reviewer
January 2, 2015
I was prepared for a more action war movie when i saw this but it ended up with to much drama. Decent story and overall okey movie tho.
December 28, 2014
This is the best Christmas/War film.
½ December 23, 2014
A unique war film, 'Joyeux Noel' is more about the human capacity for forgiveness and understanding even in the face of horror. It boasts a fine range of European talent, including the likes of a young Daniel Bruhl, a moving but sparse score, and rather convincing recreation of the tight, filthy trench life.
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