A timeless evocation of childhood innocence corrupted, René Clément’s mythical and heartbreakingly real Forbidden Games tells the story of a young girl orphaned by war and the farm boy she joins in a fantastical world of macabre play.
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A somewhat rocky start—a film about childhood during wartime that is neither horrific nor dream-like enough to match the best films on the subject. It finds its lovely pace when it finds its child's POV, the way that concepts like war, death, and religion seem abstract when you're little. So its triumph becomes that it's not just a war film about children, but for them—you could bring your own, and they'd be stirred.
This is one of the most powerful films ever made about the horrors of war and it is amplified when viewed through the innocent eyes of a child. Clement shows here that everything is corrupted by war including innocent children and peaceful animals. A true masterpiece.
Gloating over death? I know, I know. Objectively, this is a good film, a brilliant reflection about a broken childhood and there is a relation between the death of all living things. However, I'm not gonna accept this level of animal cruelty. I'm sorry but innocence is not about this kind of violence (especially when you are a child). This is excessively macabre. Even at war, death is not the answer to death.
On the surface an anti-war film, but it transcends the narrow anti-war tract; it is hardly about war at all, and this is what makes it durable. Instead the children act out rituals proscribed by society, and these rituals centre not on war per se, but on death and the attendant pain of letting go.
An utterly beautiful love story (even if between two children). Clément's construction of an innocent and pure infantile universe transcends clichéd anti-war sentiment, focusing not on underlying barbary but rather on the kindness within. The purity of this work has established it as one of the all-time greats.
Child psychology is fascinating in the way it employs fantasy and games to deny hard hitting reality and spawn happiness out of the blue; It's a futile and inconsequential past time to adults, but it's a reason for being to children. The film gets that, and closes on a sad note, perhaps advancing the notion that life is ultimately defined by loss and hardship
I know it's wrong to be more compassionate to animals than to people, and that she's just a little kid stricken by horror who was only trying to make sense of her parent's unfair and sudden death, but it still made me glad to see the manipulative little b**ch getting what she deserved at the end.