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Winter In Wartime [Blu-ray] [2008]

97 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Martijn Lakemeier, Yorick Van Wageningen, Jamie Campbell Bower, Raymond Thiry, Melody Klaver
  • Directors: Martin Koolhoven
  • Producers: San Fu Maltha, Els Vandevorst
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: Dutch, English, German
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Kaleidoscope Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 31 May 2010
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003ATD7MG
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 53,532 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

January 1945. Nazi occupied Holland lies under a blanket of snow. A young man, Michiel, defiant in his hatred for the Nazis, inadvertently receives a map detailing the hiding place of a crashed RAF pilot and sets off to prove his worth. He finds the pilot, Jack, badly injured, but the situation becomes more desperate when a dead Nazi trooper is found and the hunt for the killer commences. Unaware of the terrible consequences that await his family, Michiel decides to help Jack escape, undertaking a perilous journey that could cost him everything he has ever known. From the Producer of the multi-award winning Black Book, and co-starring Jamie Campbell Bower (Harry Potter: Deathly Hallows & Twilight New Moon), Winter in Wartime is a breathtaking cinematic masterpiece that shows the true human cost of a terrible conflict. In the darkest days of the coldest winter, a hero will be made.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Flmfn on 12 April 2012
Format: DVD
I have written another review here so I won't go into the details of what a great film I thought this was. There's just one thing that I think needs to be metioned here, so that non-Dutch viewers will see the film as it was intended, rather than comment negatively because they were under the false impression it was aimed at adult audiences.

This is a dramatization of a CHILDREN'S novel. A very well-known and well-loved Dutch children's novel in fact, based on the author's (Jan Terlouw) own childhood experiences during the devastating final "Winter of Hunger" (before the Northern part of The Netherlands was finally liberated in May 1945). But still, a children's novel, and therefor aimed at an audience of about 9-15 year-olds. In The Netherlands, this film was released as such, as a film for children/young teens. Hence the "lack" of gory action scenes or realisticly savage brutality by the hands of the occupiers that some viewers have mentioned in their comments. It was never intended for adult audiences. Maybe this knowledge will set this film in a different light for non-Dutch viewers.

I hope it does, because I loved it, as I loved the book when I was a child growing up in The Netherlands. But keep in mind, this is a story told from the perspective of a child, written for children. Don't let that fact deter you in any way though, you'll miss a little gem of a film!
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75 of 80 people found the following review helpful By Gary on 2 Jun. 2010
Format: DVD
Winter in Wartime is worth seeing if only for the beautiful cinematography. Even the coloration of scenes suits the genre and feel of this film perfectly showing the sheer dedication in the execution of this film. This is not just a story on tape but an artistic addition to film.

Although the genre of war may put some people off of watching Winter in Wartime, it must really be stressed that this film is about much more than war. It is a story of unimaginable situations, immeasurable courage and unfathomable predicaments that the characters find themselves in and as a viewer you are completely compelled to find out what will happen to these normal individuals that find themselves in abnormal circumstances.

A beautiful film, a touching story and definitely worth seeing. It is a film that will make you compare all other war films to it!

Simply brilliant!
(And it should have received the Oscar nomination it was short-listed for!!)
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Bob Salter TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 July 2010
Format: DVD
There has been a glut of recent films about the resistance movement in Europe during the Nazi occupation. There was the excellent "Max Manus" from Norway, "Army of Crime" from France, and the bigger budget Daniel Craig vehicle "Defiance" about the Bielski brothers. Perhaps the bench mark for such movies is Jean-Pierre Melville's "Army of Shadows", made way back in antiquity. Nineteen sixty nine to be more precise! Now the Dutch have thrown in their own resistance film, and it is not bad!

The story concerns a fresh faced 14 year old boy Michiel, who harbours aspirations to join the local resistance movement. The life expectancy in this movement is about the same as a first world war pilot, judging from the rate they are bumped off early on! Not something that seems to put our young would be hero off! Michiel resents his father the town mayor who appears to pander to the local Nazi's for the sake of an easier life, but he worships his Uncle Ben who has contact with the resistance. When he discovers a downed English pilot, Michiel enters into a very dangerous game. The penalty for such help being a lonely wall and the firing squad. All is not as it seems for a young boy forced to grow up fast under the harsh realities of war.

The film is something of a Dutch boys own adventure, with the theme of lost innocence at its heart. There were many children in Europe during WW2 who were sadly robbed of their innocence, so this is certainly a sincere theme. The film also realistically portrays that feeling of dread that those working in the resistance had to live with. That awful knock on the door in the middle of the night that could lead to torture and exection. We are also made painfully aware of the wartime shortages and the temptation for some to turn informer.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Hywel James TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 12 Nov. 2010
Format: DVD
By chance I watched this DVD in the same week as I saw Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds" (2010). While the latter was a farrago which to misquote Noel Coward was twice as long as "The Dirty Dozen" and not half so funny, "Winter in Wartime" (2008) by contrast addressed many terrible issues of war on the home front, occupation by a foreign power, moral complexities, personal loyalities and the compromises that must be made simply in order to remain alive, Tarantino's film which appeared to have addressed many of the same issues was generally a dud.

"Winter in Wartime" offers a taut narrative, great performances from an accomplished team of mostly Dutch actors, chillingly beautiful cinematography and an entirely convincing drama. The musical score was somewhat heavy-handed and as with some other movies merely underlined moments of high emotion when the acting and photography were perfectly adequate in themselves. That quibble apart, "Winter in Wartime" is a fine film and I recommend it strongly.
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