Made by Raoul Peck, the film shows its principle figures in an objective way that's ably Marxist in how it relishes the dialectal contradictions that Marx & Co. faced, confronted, & embodied while making their mark on history & society. Despite some rickety cinema here & there (likely from an impoverished budget, perhaps Peck needs a benefactor like Marx did), it gets the big picture of Marx's ideas. I'll take it.
Digital. Were we so in need of one more biopic about a historical figure? See the beginning and the end of the film: illustrative or correlated visual digests of what is said in off. Only the initial one could make me leave with its slow motions, crane movements, infernal pious-vocal music and human figures that comes just as models of a situation. Neither fair nor right, i must say.
It's a problem when the most powerful scene of the movie coincides with the end credits scene. The "main feature" felt like the cutscenes from an Assassin's Creed video game. Uncle Karl deserves better.
Never expected a film on this period from an attempt at an objective point of view. Much of the film mirrors the two protagonist's attempt to manifest their idea's in a compact simple direct and understandable way so that, the masses of working class people may understand and take part. Despite potential didactic pitfalls the drama comes though, in particular the last exchange between Jenny Marx and Mary Burns.
A revolution caracter in a conventional film. It's quite sad seeing so many figures that I deeply admire, like Marx, Arendt, Zweig (just a few recent exemples) treated without the same vitality of their work. This type of film usually use their biography and work without questioning, like making a temporal puzzle where everything is combine to make a simplistic portrait.
Marx and Engels in a Benny Hill ass chase scene running from police, Marx and Engels getting fucked up and vomiting on the street, Marx and Engels playing chess, Marx and Bakunin playing chess. Marx fucking his wife. Marx and Engels on the beach. And every once in a while one turns to the other and says like "You ever notice how the history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggle?" It's fun.
How do you take a historically significant character with an entire canon of complex philosophical ideas and present it to the world. It's not easy business and I don't know how fair Raoul succeeds in that. It stands as a introductory biopic to Marx' work with a heavy focus on his friendship with Engels. Yet so much more could have been explored. Paris Commune still stands out in my humble opinion.
A bit of a paint-by-numbers underwhelming assemblage but I don't hold it against the film that it's actually an introduction to young Marx. What is less excusable is the hagiographical reverence that smacks of tired old Leninist cliches (the good, saintly Marx; Engels the self-overcoming boujie-renouncer) even as it tries to be cool and rooted in history. Still, enjoyable enough.