Munich: Netflix WW2 Movie Holds the Mirror Until Today

We all know how it happened.

Hence the fictional drama that unfolds simultaneously between two friends: the aforementioned Hugh Legat and his Oxford-era German pal Paul von Hartman (Jannis Niewöhner). The couple argued after school due to Paul’s infatuation with the then-burgeoning Nazi Party and Germany’s promises of glory. But six years later, Paul is disillusioned and part of a secret resistance within the German government that works against Hitler. Also due to a rather convenient plot, he came into possession of a document that proves Hitler’s intention to acquire more “living space” for the Germans through a war of conquest through the ‘Europe. So Paul arranges to share this document with Hugh and Chamberlain at the Munich Conference in a last hope of convincing Chamberlain to aid a German military coup in Berlin.

Of course, if Hugh or Paul are caught conspiring in a German town filled with spies and prying Nazi eyes, both could be executed, one as a spy and the other as a traitor.

Munich: the brink of war is directed by Christian Schwochow, who has worked extensively on television, notably on the series The crown. This makes sense because many of the compositions and the overall staging consist of hand-shaking close-ups with shallow depths of field. The handheld is meant to make quiet dates in beer gardens and dark German streets more clandestine and dangerous, but they’re perhaps more about the usually less-funded endeavors of many Netflix dramas lit up by an avid streaming service. of content.

It particularly hurts the way certain crucial plot points occur, such as when Paul and Hugh are filmed shouting in the lobby of a German hotel where the British delegation is staying – and which was reportedly crawling with Nazi eyes. , who couldn’t have spotted such forced melodrama any easier than if the pair had worn matching neon jumpsuits. In that sense, the more theatrical flourishes fall flat whenever the film attempts to be a full-fledged thriller.

Nonetheless, there’s a gnawing, unavoidable tension throughout the film that becomes almost unbearable as the screws tighten and Chamberlain places the fate of Europe firmly in the lion’s mouth. This is partly due to Irons’ expert-judged performance as British Prime Minister. Always a captivating on-screen presence when he wants to be (or given solid enough material), Irons inhabits Chamberlain’s weakness, yes, but also cultivates an apparent awareness of his doomed madness. He knows his efforts will fail but he will continue the charade anyway in the hope of peace. Is this correct for humans? I don’t really know, but it makes for a good desperate drama.

About Victoria Rothstein

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