Top positive review
43 people found this helpful
on 27 January 2013
I enjoyed this a great deal. David Tenant does a good job as a French officer. There is no attempt to Frenchify him, but think of all the English actors who have played Maigret and were just obviously, painfully English. Tenant passes for French.
They have also pitched it right in terms of the amateurish nature of the of the forces involved. In 1937 they were all rather amateurish, including the Nazis. The cold professionalism on all sides developed as the war proceeded. Also, and most unusually, the Polish characters are all spot on, in no sense cardboard cut outs to fill the plot. This may be because the director is Coky Giedroy who has a Polish-Lithuanian father, so she has some connection to the style and manner of Poland and eastern Europe (strangely she is not credited on Amazon, and not on the main page at IMDB).
Another reviewer has criticized the production as 'overtly twee'. I did not find it so. Neither was I in any doubt as to the nationality of the participants during the production. It is reasonably subtle and you do have to pay attention, although the film makes competent use of dress tags to identify people for you (black double breasted leather coat with by today's standards very short hair - German, obviously, and so on). It does get the self-conscious ennui of pre-war political life about right, and I suppose they were a bit twee then.
For me, the music can easily break any production, but the music in this is clever and neat (neat as opposed to sloppy, which can ruin a production). It does an excellent job of supporting the narrative, whilst being listenable in its own right.
The film has subtitles available.