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

Joyeux NoŽl (Merry Christmas) Reviews

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April 1, 2018
A heartwarming tale of brotherhood among "enemies." A truce is called on the front lines during WWI as the armies of France, Britain and Germany come together to discover that we, humans, are more alike across the globe than different. Same worries, same hopes. etc. Based on a true story, this was a powerfully effective story handled well by both the actors and those behind the cameras. My favorite movie on the subject, however, remains A Midnight Clear.
December 30, 2017
A modern christmas classic especially if you are interested in WW1 (which happens to be my favorite war to learn about).
December 13, 2017
I honestly do not see any issues with this film. The pacing, drama, comedy, character relationships, camera work, depiction of war, and overall respect of this film is just amazing. The ending is rather harsh and sudden, but that seems intentional.

Highly recommended as a war or Christmas film.
½ December 12, 2017
I found a great Christmas Movie with wonderful Christian themes. One major flaw at the end of the movie: Christian Carion, the French Director, had to put in something negative about Christianity. He couldn't let this be a good uplifting movie without inserting his anti- Christian bias. It's such a shame.

Movieguide said this, "the Catholic bishop ... is portrayed as a venal hypocrite. In one follow-up scene, he even gives a short mass before some new Scottish recruits and he tells the recruits that all the Germans are totally evil and that Jesus Christ Himself would want them to kill as many Germans as they can. Of course, this blasphemy is rejected by the movie and by the Scottish priest, who gives up his priestly Catholic office.
Thus, although this is a very pro-Christian movie about Christmas, the filmmakers may be a bit more anti-clerical and antinomian (lawless) than they needed to be. Of course, there's bound to be some wacky leftists, atheists or liberals who will use these scenes, and the rest of the movie, to make fallacious arguments against all organized religion and against all wars."

Christian Carion, the director of the film, confessed that he lifted this speech from one gave a year later that had nothing to do with the Christmas truce but which had everything to do with the Armenian genocide that had just taken place. You can tell this by the choice of the word "crusade" used by the bishop. He left out the most important parts of the speech which referred to the crucifixion which the Islamic Ottomans inflicted upon the Armenian Christians.

This was not a Roman Catholic Bishop but an Anglican one and as such was a call on his civil government to act as Defender of the Faith and execute the perpetrators of these great crimes. This was well and proper because:

1. It is the Churches job to speak to the Civil authority reminding them of their duties under God which are to punish the evil doer according to Romans 13.

2. Because the Church of England as a State Church, and as such it is exercising its proper role in the government of the United Kingdom.

Carion is either ignorant of these facts and/or he wants to take things out of context to make a point that should never have been made and which ruined a perfectly good movie in the end.

But other than that one flaw, it is an excellent movie. WW 1 was tragic. But this was a bright spot. All the major countries share the blame and each had their own scores to settle and jingoism to fulfill. The United States should not have been involved.

As an example of how our era responds: I explained to the woman at the library as I checked out the video a little about what the movie was about. Her response: "Men!" This is the mindless feminism that has taken hold of our era just like the mindless jingoism took hold of them.

Final note: The Scots haven't been Roman Catholic in centuries. So, I was surprised that it was a Scottish Roman Catholic Priest that gave the sermon and a Roman Catholic Bishop that gave the blasphemous speech. Perhaps there were some Roman Catholics still in Scotland or was this Carion manufactured too?
June 19, 2017
Based on an unbelievable true story with no b.s, Joyeux Noel is a must see special film for the holidays.
February 12, 2017
Multi-lingual movie dealing with a poignant moment in WW1 when French and German troops stepped out of their trenches to celebrate Christmas Day together. It successfully depicts humanity and good will briefly triumphant in its darkest hour
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.
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