Most helpful critical review
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 8 February 2010
The well-known story of Anne Frank and the others hiding in that attic in Amsterdam for years, is of course as heartbreaking as ever. This film's different angle of putting their helper Miep Gies in the main role rather than Anne herself, should make it a valuable addition to our knowledge about the terrible events of those years. Unfortunately, it fails badly. Mary Steenburgen's performance as Miep Gies is unbelieveably wooden and often overacted to an almost comic degree. Neither is she alone in wooden acting, although in fairness not all characters are as badly played as hers. It does not help much that almost everybody speaks with horribly fake accent, Dutch and Germans alike. Oh yes, the Germans. In the film, they are all portrayed as sneering creeps, reminding me of those wartime propaganda films. Realism is not always on display either. At the end of the film, when Hans Frank (Paul Scofield) returns from concentration camp, he looks exactly like he did before he was arrested. Even his hairstyle has not changed! At only 95 minutes, this is not a very long film, yet it seemed to go on forever. Sadly, this film is an opportunity missed. Don't waste your time or money on it.