12.30.2005

REVIEW: Munich (Steven Spielberg, 2005)

2005 has been a year of exponentially relentless films. We've had films that push the envelope possibly too far like Sin City, others that artfully indulge us like Devil's Rejects, and now we have Munich. This film is unrelenting from beginning to end, if only due to the suspense factor as opposed to the intended historical importance.

Munich does lack poignancy, and leans heavily towards action/adventure entertainment as opposed to sophisticated poignancy, but that's not necessarily a bad thing, its just not what I expected going in.

Spielberg's intricately woven camera movements that interact with the film sets is more mature and provides deeper emphasis here than in Catch Me If You Can, in which they were singularly impressive but often seemed unneeded and distracting.

Eric Bana delivers outstandingly, which may surprise some. Both Ciaran Hinds and Daniel Craig turn in worthy performances and Mathieu Kassovitz and Geoffrey Rush are both great as always. Mathieu Amalric is an actor I had never heard of before - his work consists mainly of French films - but he is effectively ominous here in his role as Louis.

The work Spielberg put in on this has to be commended, considering the project commenced immediately after War of the Worlds opened in June, but Munich fails to come together as it wants to. It is certainly nowhere near the fantastic quality of previous Spielberg successes like Jaws or Minority Report.

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