Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Joyeux Noël (2005)

I can't recall when I was last so disappointed by a film. I had been looking forward to seeing this for a long time, as it had been generally well-received by critics and nominated for some pretty big awards. I realize now that the Christmas Truce of 1914 on the Western Front is a very nice thing to read about, but it should never constitute the entire plot of a film. And if someone insists that it must, then they should seriously consider toning down the sentimentality, adding an interesting sub-plot or two and including some multidimensional characters. I really can't say it any better than Nathan Rabin from The Onion: "Though a painless time-passer, Joyeux Noël ultimately contributes little to the venerable anti-war genre beyond its curious message that to some degree, war is hell because it prevents soldiers from making really neat friends and pen-pals from different countries."


Dave said...

I am sorry to hear that you did not like this one. I know it was a little slow for the tastes of most, but I did feel some true emotion in it. I do agree that it resulted in telling a story in such a long winded way as to alienate half of the probably intended audience. Thanks for the honest review.

scituate said...

I just couldn't appreciate any of the characters. I was looking forward to watching a war movie with snowy scenes of cigarette smoking and rich dialogue, but there was barely even any of that. Just a scene where a guy coughs and tells his girlfriend that he's been smoking a lot. Not that I could tell.