Number of Times Seen – 1 (28 Aug 2017)
Brief Synopsis – A man imprisoned in France by the Nazis after the German invasion plans an escape before they execute him.
My Take on it – This is a film that I found out about when reading a recent review of Dunkirk (2017).
This film was used as an example of a film which tells most of it’s story visually with very little real dialogue.
I was enthralled from start to finish by the way this film was presented to us.
Since the main character is mostly alone in his own cell during this film, I loved the way that they used narration to tell us everything that is going through his mind as he slowly plans his escape.
We get to see his daily routine while planning his escape and how he gathers information from other prisoners as to what is beyond the walls.
Loved how this film takes its time and doesn’t rush through any scenes so that we can get a complete picture of the emotional and physical conditions that he must endure while planning his quest for freedom.
Knowing the fact that both the director and writer each spent time in POW prisons during World War II helps raise the level of realism because we then know that much (if not all) of what we see is based on real life accounts.
The tension level is kept quite high the entire time and we fear for the main character each time that he thinks he may be discovered.
Bottom Line – Great film that takes its time telling us the entire plan of one man’s quest for freedom. The narration is perfectly used because it allows us to understand everything that is going on within a man’s mind as he takes each cautious step in his plan. The fact that both the author and the director had spent time in POW prisons during the war helps keep the realism very high since we know that almost all (if not all) is taken from a true event. Highly Recommended!
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Bresson insisted on complete authenticity. Original author Andre Devigny served as adviser on the film, which was actually shot in the same Montluc prison where he was incarcerated. Devigny also loaned Bresson the ropes and hooks he had used in his escape. (From IMDB)
Rating – Oscar Worthy
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