Friday, December 26, 2008
"Nazis. I hate these guys."
So it's a Gimbel family tradition to see a movie on Christmas Eve. I love this tradition, so Edward and I have kept this as our tradition. However this year we were not interested in any movies that were out on Christmas Eve, so we opted for Boxing Day instead. Our movie for this year was Valkyrie. First off, this movie was fantastic. Edward and I were sobbing at the end, and grateful for a darkened movie theatre so we could emerge with dignity. There are so many reasons I love this film. The cinematography was excellent. The casting was fantastic. But what I was incredibly impressed with was the heightened intensity of the climax. The movie's subject was the July 20, 1944 plot of German army officers to assassinate Adolf Hitler and set up of a cout de' etat. As an audience, whether anyone knew of this plot or not, we all know the outcome of this movie. Even so, whilst watching this movie I was overly anxious, knowing that the plotters would likely be killed and subconsciously hoping that the movie would turn into fiction so their plot could succeed. I was pleased to find after some post-movie online research (i.e. Wickipedia), that the only historical inaccuracy was that the original plan for Operation Valkyrie was proposed by General Friedrich Olbricht and not Colonel Count Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg (Tom Cruise). I strongly recommend this movie to everyone. It's about time a "mainstream" movie came out featuring Nazis not as the cardboard cutouts you might see in an Indiana Jones movie. At least Indiana Jones pumps up the campyness and cartoonifies it's characters, being very self-aware, whereas other WWII era movies show all the Nazi soldiers as heartless evil-doers bent on the destruction of humankind. I think we Americans forget that there was a lot of Nazi resistance and our one dimensional portrayal of the German's at the time is shortsighted.
Hooray for this movie. Go see it.