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3.6 out of 5 stars
3.6 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 25 May 2014
Driven by anger over injustice and the desire to make ordinary people aware of it, courageous yet impetuous, Rebecca is an internationally acclaimed war photographer. Is this fair on her longsuffering husband left to shoulder the responsibility of two daughters, or on the children themselves, the elder of whom is beginning to grasp the full extent of the risks her mother is taking? Does Rebecca get too much of a buzz out of the danger? What exactly does her work achieve, particularly when she is seriously injured in the process? These are not the kind of questions, of course, over which male war photographs are forced to agonise to the same degree.

Starting with a tense scene in which Rebecca films a young woman preparing for a suicide bomber attack, some may find the film too harrowing. Yet, it is for the most part a moving and thoughtful examination of an important current issue. The grimness is relieved by moments of humour and the beauty of the Irish coast where Rebecca's husband works - and you can't help wondering, as he does, how she can bear to swap this for the dusty mayhem of Kabul or a Kenyan refugee camp. The film presents both sides of the argument, avoids tipping over into sentimentality, and reaches an unpredictable and well-judged ending.

Juliet Binoche's acting in the main role is outstanding, and she is well-supported by those playing her often bewildered husband and children.
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on 6 October 2014
This is an incredible film. Hard hitting and partly autobiographical (from the director Erik Poppe). There is exceptional acting, some dramatic cinematography and with a narrative that it is never easy to see where it will be taking you. Sadly there are very few light moments in this intense film.

Filmed on different continents and with an international cast this is an ambitious film but one that for me, has delivered something very special, especially the acting which is particularly noteworthy, from the two main female leads played by Juliette Binoch and Lauryn Canny but also true of the entire cast. This is no lightweight film and it offers much to think about.

With some really great acting and photography and a thoughtful narrative this is a great film though its subject matter can make it a bit tough going at times – though I guess the director wasn’t out to make a light-and-fluffy film.

Although I probably won’t be returning to this film as much as othr Juliette Binoche films, it is one that I will be watching again and would recommend it to anyone who appreciates good acting in a well directed film.

The DVD has the main feature and Scene Selection but sadly no extra features.
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on 26 December 2014
Film Movement has has just released 1000 Times Good Night on DVD. As with all their titles, 1000 Times Good Night is a multiple winner and official selection of numerous film festivals.

Academy Award winner Juliette Binoche stars as Rebecca, a war photojournalist. Rebecca is fearless, going to the front lines in war torn zones, putting herself in extremely dangerous situations. While documenting a suicide bomber in Afghanistan, she is badly hurt. It is only when she is in the hospital that we learn she is a wife and mother - and that her husband has had enough. An ultimatum is issued - her job or her family....

I was drawn in from the opening scenes of this film, fascinated and then horrified as I realized what was happening. The juxtaposition between the chaos of the opening few scenes and then cutting to the peaceful Irish countryside is jarring. And it mirrors Rebecca's feelings, emotions and state of mind.

Conflict, desire, want and need are wound throughout the film - the wars Rebecca covers, the struggle between staying at home and capturing conflict and exposing it to the world, to tamp down her desire to be where the action is, the need to document these atrocities for the world, the wanting to be a good mother, wife and friend and more.

Binoche is a brilliant actor. Her performance in this film is remarkable - moving and oh so believable. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau plays husband Marcus. He too, turned in a good performance - I understood his need to protect his daughters, but I grew angry with his behavior. Young Lauren Canny plays daughter Stephanie. The scenes between her and Rebecca are poignant, as Steph slowly comes to understand what it is her mother does - and why.

As I watched, I was thinking to myself how well this film was done - the cinematography, the attitudes, the passion and the drive to expose atrocities to the world. It was only in the film's bio section that I discovered that director Erik Poppe was a war photojournalist himself in the 1980's. He too went through the same personal and professional conflicts he's given to Rebecca.

Excellent acting, compelling topic, eye-opening situations - and definitely recommended.
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 7 December 2014
The marvellous Juliette Binoche stars as Rebecca a photo journalist. We met her in Afghanistan taking a series of photos of a woman who is being prepared for a suicide bombing. Like all journalists - she is there to observe - not interfere, but she gets caught up in the whole extreme drama and is involved in the explosion.

Her husband Marcus - Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (`Game of Thrones') brings her home to Ireland and their two daughters for her to make a full recovery. It is then that the past catches up with her and she finally sees the dreadful emotional toll that her work is having on her family. However, she has always been driven by her passion to make the World see what really happens in conflict zones and that sort of passion is hard to suppress. Add to that the fact that she has become a celebrity for her work and the choice between family and work becomes ever more difficult to make.

There is an awful lot in this film and I did feel at one time that issues were not being addressed properly. The early scenes of the suicide bomber's friends crying as they said goodbye to her got me thinking. She seemingly has a choice about her death but her victims will never even be allowed the chance to say goodbye as she is doing - and that is both hypocritical and very sad. The issues around being an unwelcome voyeur, as some photographers are seen, are addressed but the real story here is the ripples that war has around the world and for those caught up in it.

I found this to be a very moving and quietly powerful film; it has a natural rhythm which is helped by the wonderful musical score and the pacing throughout that knows when to ramp things up and to let them drift. Lauryn Canny playing the daughter Steph is particularly good in a very challenging role, but then everyone gives their best here. It was also a collaborative effort of the likes of The Norsk, Swedish and Irish film boards and is mainly in English with a bit of Norwegian. This is a film with high production values, great acting and deals with uncomfortable issues in a caring way and as such I can absolutely recommend.
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on 29 February 2016
A satisfying film to watch, with good coverage of quite difficult subject matter (suicide bombers, terrorist groups etc). Juliette Binoche thoroughly immersed herself in the role of war photographer, and delivered a very emotional and convincing performance. I did find some of the scenes a little hard to believe, though, especially the one where she takes her daughter to Kenya to visit a village, and then effectively abandons her daughter to photograph a terrorist attack on the village, putting herself and her daughter in mortal danger - maybe someone would really be that selfish, but it seemed a bit unlikely to me; it was a good scene apart from that, though. It was also good to see Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, as her husband, portraying the huge emotional toll that the war photographer's career took on the whole family.
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on 17 October 2015
A good idea for a story but the film is awful.

I've no idea what the director was doing but there were countless scenes where the camera drifted off into a dreamy, slow, boring shot, nothing happens and the film continues to drag on.

The main actor in this film is appalling, he simple is unconvincing and irritating. Isabella Rossellini plays the part fine but I'm afraid this is just a very slow boring film with no direction.
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on 13 July 2015
Storyline of a journalist reporting from dangerous places and worrying about the effect of it on her family. Despite the present of Juliette Binoche, it is a very average movie. I found it slow moving and not at all original - basically a bit boring. The director could have made better use of excellent actors and the landscape where it was filmed. I also thought that the dialogue was also unremarkable.
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on 13 March 2015
This film has some distressing images in it but it really made me think about some of the images of war which we see online and in Sunday supplements. I'd never really considered what the photographer must have gone through to get the shots. The conflict with which Juliette Binoche's character battles is really interesting and moving. She clearly has a strong relationship with her husband and children despite long periods spent apart. And she really wants to stay at home to be with them, to be a mother and a wife, but is torn by also being one of the world's best war photographers, putting herself in constant danger. It's brilliant - a favourite film of all time.
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on 28 February 2015
I've given this film five stars for the content, photography and music but I am fed up with producers who don't think of the hard of hearing and the deaf. Do they not think these people want to enjoy and appreciate good well made films. I am a hearing person but found I had to turn the volume up to the maximum and still could not understand all of the dialogue. The main male actor mumbled through his beard all the way through. What is it with these actors, do they think it adds to their appeal, I think not? The only two actors who opened their mouths and enunciated correctly were Juliet and the young actress playing her eldest daughter. I would have enjoyed this film so much more should it have had subtitles, so come on you producers get it together and think of how many more people could be enjoying your films if you gave it more thought.
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This is not an easy film to watch, nor one we particularly enjoyed. It’s undoubtedly powerful and tackles some sensitive and important issues – not least the rights and wrongs of intimate reportage of conflicts and atrocity. It poses important questions and – such is the skilful direction – that it leaves many of them hanging for the audience to attempt to answer.

The central character, a crusading photo-reporter, is unequivocally selfish and convinced of her own moral certitude. She’s on a lifelong crusade to thrust the brutal ills of the world under the noses of the western chattering classes. She's howling in the wilderness about corporate greed and the inhumanity of man’s activities in the developing world. She repeatedly risks her own safety with the carelessness of the habitual thrill-seeker, revelling in her own kind of post-colonial superiority: only with her intervention can some kind of redress come about, it seems.
Yet she causes grievous suffering herself, tormenting her family every time she takes unacceptable risks. Her children and husband who she claims to love live in a state of semi-static misery, always waiting for the call which tells them the worst has happened. She continually places the welfare of strangers, halfway around the world, above that of her own children.
In a bizarre inversion of normal family life, the photographer mother seeks approval from her teenage daughter – relying on the child to provide moral support for her extreme activities and destructive impulses. The scenes of conflict within the family are as powerful and distressing as those which take place in Kabul, when a jihadi group prepare a young suicide bomber… and the photographer over-steps the mark once again.
There are a few, tiny moments of relief: a beachside scene when husband and wife are reunited with the passion which originally drew them together is beautifully observed. And throughout the cinematography and acting are stunning. The opening sequence of motes of dust on shafts of light is breath-taking – as is the scene preparing the bomber. For much of the movie, however, we were aggravated, enraged and frustrated. Which might have been the film-makers’ intention, of course.

This certainly gave us plenty to talk about for the next few days. But it’s not a movie we’d want to watch again. Worthy subject: amazing performances: gruelling.
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