Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Valkyrie [2008]

Valkyrie is exactly what it aspires to be – an engaging Hollywood blockbuster and a well-researched docu-fiction – and it succeeds on both counts quite handsomely. The movie recounts the spectacular attempt at assassinating Adolf Hitler and coup d’etat to take control of the Fuhrer’s infamous Third Reich during the fag end of the Second World War. Starring Tom Cruise as Colonel Claus Von Stauffenberg, a fearless man and architect of the brilliant, albeit doomed, plot, and a host of respected character actors as co-conspirators in this act of high treason and bravery, the movie boasts of smooth storyline, sharp editing, and slick production designs. Agreed, in trying to recreate the elaborate chain of events from its inception to aftermath, the movie doesn’t serve more than as an entertaining vehicle and good history lesson; it never attempts to explore the psychological complexities of Stauffenberg – he is no more than a tragic hero. But then, thankfully, it was also careful enough to avoid falling in the been-there-seen-that trap of jingoistic Nazi-bashing war movies. Hence, in short, this is a movie that is to be watched and enjoyed, but not pondered upon too deeply.

Director: Bryan Singer
Genre: Political Thriller/War/Docu-Fiction/Biopic
Language: English
Country: US

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