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23 Ratings

Memoir of War

La douleur

Directed by Emmanuel Finkiel
France, Switzerland, 2017
Drama, History


After having her husband deported for being a major figure of the Resistance, during the German occupation of France, a young writer is torn in anguish by her secret liaison with a comrade and her ambiguous relationship with a French agent of the Gestapo.

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Memoir of War Directed by Emmanuel Finkiel
Marguerite encounters others whose pain is greater than hers—the mother of a Jewish girl taken to the camps; skeletal survivors from Buchenwald—and the film includes moving scenes of her being pulled out of her interiority to recognize the reality of others. But its lovely visuals, often melting into a blur, and its densely layered voiceover, side with subjectivity to a degree that can be alienating.
August 28, 2018
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Most filmmakers, like most people, have much of note to say about their lives—but, when experiences veer toward the extraordinary, whether death or pleasure or violence, the artist’s depth of insight and powers of imagination are severely tested. In “Memoir of War,” Finkiel displays a narrow perspective that conveys extreme experiences as a series of cinematic banalities.
August 18, 2018
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Ms. Thierry plays Marguerite with an understatement that can be enigmatic, seductive, or deliberately confounding. The picture as a whole doesn’t do justice to her committed performance. This is a serious, high-minded film, but it’s also a somber one whose quiet spots too often feel not contemplative or fraught, but enervated. The movie is infused with Duras’s words, but doesn’t have her genius.
August 16, 2018
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