Archive for January, 2009

Che and Defiance

January 20, 2009

So I’m running a little behind with my film reviews at the moment so here’s a catch on my recent viewing.

Che, Part 1: I thought this was really good. The cinematography was brilliant and Benecio Del Toro is fantastic as always and whoever was playing Fidel Castro was so like him I often forgot this was a film. I found it interesting and, from someone with little knowledge of precedings at that time, fair and balanced, though I was under the impression that Che had some more skeletons in his closet the way many former communist leaders tend too. A slight problem during the film was that after several months of fighting and living in jungle everyone looked the same and it got harder and harder to tell who was who. All in all though definitely worth a watch and I look forward to Part 2.

Defiance: Daniel Craig plays a leader of escaping Jews in Belorussia during the Nazi occupation based on a true story. This film was pretty solid with pretty good acting all round though I heard complaints that James Bond stuck out his jaw dramatically on a regular basis, but I didn’t really notice that myself. The film was tense and, ultimately, had a solid moral message but one that didn’t get in the way of the story telling and wasn’t afraid to admit the shortcomings of the characters involved. My main complaint with the film would be that after the first 15 minutes or so the story seemed to lose most of the horror of the Nazi’s actions and became just a film about hiding in the woods which could just as easily have been humans hiding from Cylons in Battlestar Galactica. Basically what I’m saying is the film was almost too enjoyable as an adventure and lacked some of the edge that perhaps this subject deserves. Trouble is this is always going to be compared with the likes of Schindler’s List and it’s not in that class. Don’t get me wrong, this is a good film and worth seeing probably, but it  won’t change your life like Schindler’s List should.