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      Army of Shadows

      Released Jun 19, 1970 2h 20m War History Drama List
      97% Tomatometer 76 Reviews 94% Audience Score 5,000+ Ratings This adaptation of the book by Joseph Kessel paints an understated, unglamorous portrait of the French Resistance during World World II. Betrayed by an informant, Philippe Gerbier (Lino Ventura) finds himself trapped in a torturous Nazi prison camp. Though Gerbier escapes to rejoin the Resistance in occupied Marseilles, France, and exacts his revenge on the informant, he must continue a quiet, seemingly endless battle against the Nazis in an atmosphere of tension, paranoia and distrust. Read More Read Less

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      Army of Shadows

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      Army of Shadows

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      Critics Consensus

      Originally made in 1969, this recently reissued classic is a masterful examination of the inner workings of the World War II resistance efforts.

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      Critics Reviews

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      Danny Leigh Financial Times Watch it a hundred times and the dread, bad-dream opening sequence of Nazi troops swarming through the Arc de Triomphe might still leave you reeling... Rated: 5/5 Apr 1, 2020 Full Review Glenn Heath Jr. Slant Magazine "Jean-Pierre Melville cherishes paradox and free thinking," and both elements are on beautiful display in his masterpiece. Jan 12, 2011 Full Review Jeff Shannon Seattle Times As close to a masterpiece as any film you're likely to see this year. Rated: 4/4 Aug 17, 2007 Full Review Dennis Harvey 48 Hills Jean-Pierre Melville’s most ambitious works. Sep 19, 2023 Full Review Brian Eggert Deep Focus Review Gaving fought in the Resistance, Melville understands such a state of mind more than any other filmmaker, which is why Army of Shadows emerges as a meditation more than a historical account. Rated: 4/4 Mar 21, 2022 Full Review Matt Brunson Film Frenzy Bleak and uncompromising. Rated: 3.5/4 Apr 9, 2020 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

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      Nathan H One gets the immediate sense that one is watching a masterpiece. The restoration is almost as much of a marvel as the film itself. Melville draws on his real-life experience to make the plot and characters layered, and everything just rings true. By the end, I want the movie to continue, but then the final text proves me wrong: I'm made happy that Melville knew where to stop. It's simply a masterwork of cinema, not just a landmark of French film history. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 01/18/24 Full Review William L Among political thrillers, Army of Shadows has led an unusual life. Released in the waning years of de Gaulle's influence and popularity, the film was largely denounced in France due to the political shakeups of the period, only to find international acclaim decades later as prints began to be released internationally. The unusual distribution history of Army of Shadows fits oddly well with its premise - the struggles of a French resistance group facing both internal sabotage and German persecution, with particular focus on the emotional sacrifice and cold indifference necessary in the pursuit of a larger good. Like his protagonists, Jean-Pierre Melville worked in pursuit of an end that promised no reward and invited suspicion and unease despite supporting a noble cause. The film is awash in an atmosphere of suspicion, as characters are forced into a practical prisoner's dillemma, weighing self-preservation against loyalty and knowing those around them are doing the same. While very much functional thematically, there may be some gripes in the execution; at times the endeavors of our protagonists lean more towards the fantastical and daring than the realistic and grounded (jail break during sadistic execution via smoke bomb seems more Great Escape than Melville noir). Despite those qualms, the sentiment of Army of Shadows still rings clearly, despondent and tragic though it may be. (4/5) Rated 4 out of 5 stars 07/03/22 Full Review Audience Member Filmmaking at its best. No gimmicks, no film tricks, just superb acting, straight forward story and a directing style that focus on keeping you interested in the movie from beginning to end. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Audience Member Taut and dark but not as gripping as I was hoping from a resistance thriller. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 01/28/23 Full Review Audience Member This is a movie that will stay with me for a while, more than anything because of its exploration of the psychology of a small, very clandestine resistance movement. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/19/23 Full Review isaac m Army Of Shadows is a French movie that talks about the French Resistance during the Second World War. I enjoy the performances, screenplay, direction and themes. I also like that they hadn't romanticized or change the historical events. Overall, Army Of Shadows is a good take of the French Resistance during WW2. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Read all reviews
      Army of Shadows

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      Movie Info

      Synopsis This adaptation of the book by Joseph Kessel paints an understated, unglamorous portrait of the French Resistance during World World II. Betrayed by an informant, Philippe Gerbier (Lino Ventura) finds himself trapped in a torturous Nazi prison camp. Though Gerbier escapes to rejoin the Resistance in occupied Marseilles, France, and exacts his revenge on the informant, he must continue a quiet, seemingly endless battle against the Nazis in an atmosphere of tension, paranoia and distrust.
      Director
      Jean-Pierre Melville
      Producer
      Jacques Dorfmann
      Screenwriter
      Jean-Pierre Melville
      Distributor
      Universal Pictures
      Production Co
      Les Films Corona, Fono Roma
      Genre
      War, History, Drama
      Original Language
      French (France)
      Release Date (Theaters)
      Jun 19, 1970, Original
      Rerelease Date (Theaters)
      Aug 26, 2015
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Sep 2, 2014
      Box Office (Gross USA)
      $24.6K
      Runtime
      2h 20m
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