Tom Cruise’s Valkyrie: ‘Intimidated By History’ – From Die Welt, Germany
For those considering seeing the movie Valkyrie, which is opening tomorrow, WORLDMEETS.US has been translating German reviews of the film. Moderate Voice readers will recall last week’s review by the Sueddeutsche Zeitung, which offered high praise of Tom Cruise’s latest project.
German sensitivities about Cruise’s membership in Scientology and the fact that the American actor is shining a light on one of modern Germany’s proudest moments, make German reaction to the film particularly interesting.
The main complaint this time seems to be the that Cruise’s portrayal of Claus Graf Stauffenberg is “too timid.” And also interestingly – and this could be a bit of German-French rivalry rearing its head, Hanns-Georg Rodek writes in part:
“One could credit Operation Valkyrie for being a film that doesn’t fall into the traps of many Hollywood epics, namely the creation of a larger-than-life central character. But they could have made Stauffeberg just a little bit larger, simply because he is the central character in both the conspiracy and the movie. At the very least, they could have made him as big as the Edward Fox character in The Day of the Jackal – a character so strong that at some point the audience finds itself wishing for him to succeed, simply because of his cleverness and tenacity. … The entire Valkyrie project seems a little intimidated by history, by its exact reconstructions and by German sensitivities.”
By Hanns-Georg Rodek
Tranklated By Ulf Behncke
December 16, 2008
Germany – Die Welt – Original Article (German)
It was a long, hard struggle. On Monday evening, the film Valkyrie had its New York premiere. Tom Cruise in the role of Hitler assassin Stauffenberg is unlike anything his career might have suggested. The elements of a thriller are all in place as expected, but it falls short of being the sought-after masterpiece.
At least they didn’t mix up the eye-patch. In The 20th of July [Der 20 Juli ], the first film adaptation of the assassination attempt on Hitler’s life, actor Wolfgang Preiss in the role of Claus Schenk von Stauffenberg wore the eye patch over the right eye. Tom Cruise wears it, correctly, over the left.
No, Valkyrie doesn’t play into the hands of many opponents of the film, who began lining up before the first scene was shot, by simply portraying historical inaccuracies. But neither has it turned out to be the definitive portrayal of one of the key events in recent German history.
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