Sometimes a film can come out in relative obscurity, and turn out to be an almost tolerable adventure all the same. Defiance isn't one of those. It's a holocaust movie, which means dead bodies, cruel deaths, evil Nazi's, and sallow, miserable starving Jews. It's almost guaranteed that the sadistic misery-loving public will go and see this movie. Let's not kid ourselves: holocaust movies make bank. Every time. They do to film what Johnny Depp does for Tim Burton. They are money spinners, formulas that sell. Ka-ching. New Jews making money off dead Jews. And they say anti-semitism isn't ironic.
Schindler's List is still the pinnacle of holocaust movies; it contained all those fun Holocaust elements that made us reflect on how terrible World War 2 was, and how happy we all should be for not having lived through it. Now please stop Hollywood. Stop. Step away from the Jew. Or at least spend some of that rampant cash on a decent script. Am I the only person left alive that cares about the story? I don't want to see mass graves, dead children, and the ghetto again and again. Please find something else unless of course, you plan on doing it really well. Defiance doesn't come close.
Here’s the thing: the more bad Holocaust films you make, the more Holocaust clichés you employ, the more the Holocaust itself becomes a cliché. The first few Holocaust films had a message and were probably intended to be meaningful. The last hundred were commercial vehicles designed to play on audience sympathies and line the producers’ pockets with money. Ultimately, Hollywood has done what every Jew on the planet pleas desperately to never happen: made the Holocaust meaningless on a pop culture scale.
Despite his early career pit-stain of producing "I am Sam", this is hardly director, Edward Zwick's fault. His epics generally cause less pain than the norm. I have to blame the semi-conscious retard that hired the cast. Blonde haired, blue eyed Tuvia Bielski (Daniel Craig) is the most Aryan looking Jew I've ever seen in my life. His brother Zus Bielski (Liev Schreiber) looks like a lumberjack. They live in a forest like lost boys from Disney's Peter Pan. And they're all supposed to be Russian.
The ridiculous accents I can handle, but for some reason in every scene there is a man or woman coughing. It alternates from supporting actor to lead actor to child on the edge of the screen. It degenerates into consistent low hacking choruses of wheezing and spluttering. They should have renamed the film 'defiant cough,' because it does not go away. So Aryan Jew and his lumberjack brother save a gaggle of people and flee into the forest. Cough. Some of them decide to fight with the Red Army. Cough. Some decide to build a camp. Cough. And another camp because the first is destroyed. Cough, cough. Then the Germans come. The plot twist to end all plot twists.
After rummaging through my pockets for a handy strip of cough drops and eating at least six in a desperate attempt to get the actors on screen to stop coughing, I fell into codeine induced euphoria. Several people around me had sunk so low in their seats that their kneecaps brushed the theater floor. If you had stuck up a piece of old chewing gum next to the screen I would have watched that instead.
Defiance is nondescript, featureless movie fodder, made to be bland and digested anyway. You won't smile during the film and your tear ducts aren't going to clot with blood because of the horrors you see. After the movie you just don't feel that bad for them anymore.
If this movie is anything like the real story then the Russian Jews probably contracted typhus just so that they had something to do. I think they needed a change from shooting the occasional German and watching the forest leaves grow. Hell, the audience endured more than they did. We had to peel our eyelids back and pray for the end. All they had to do was look hungry. If you're expecting to get blown away by this movie, better take a small tube of c4 plastic explosive because that's the only way it's going to happen.
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