Munich: The Edge of War (2021)

Title:  Munich: The Edge of War

Year: 2021

Genre: Biography | Drama | History |

Runtime: 130 min

Director: Christian Schwochow

Starring:  Jeremy Irons, George MacKay, Jannis Niewöhner


6.8/10

Based on the international bestseller by Robert Harris. It is Autumn 1938 and Europe stands on the brink of war. Adolf Hitler is preparing to invade Czechoslovakia and Neville Chamberlain’s government desperately seeks a peaceful solution. With the pressure building, Hugh Legat, a British civil servant, and Paul von Hartmann, a German diplomat, travel to Munich for the emergency Conference. As negotiations begin, the two old friends find themselves at the center of a web of political subterfuge and very real danger.

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THE FAILURE OF DIPLOMACY

As much as Munich: The Edge of War is a European diplomatic race to prevent world war and fail, it is also a comprehensive look at the naïve, ambitious perception of former politicians that didn’t look for the truth. It’s a dialogue-filled film with no extinct action sequences that rattle the cages, as it takes place in a slumber and wait-what-will-happened moment. The imminent threat might be there in the background as an important historic reminder.

Jeremy Irons is practically flawless as prime minister Neville Chamberlain. It’s George MacKay’s Hugh Legat’s dynamic relationship with Chamberlain that marks the interesting part of the film. MacKay starred in the popular one-cut war film in 1917. The film goes to great lengths to showcase Hitler’s fanatic plan of conquering Europe and failed diplomacy, which correlates to recent security measures occurring in modern Europe. It doesn’t hit on the emotional level as much as it could. Despite good performance, it reveals a slow-paced talkative history film. It’s a film that had the potential to be far better but the slow pace kills the mood. Ulrich Matthes, as the brutal dictator, doesn’t sell it with a fake wig and a phony mustache. There are also the historical aspects taking place, where the director took certain creative liberties adjusting how it actually plays out.

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However, it could be seen as an important motion picture as a firm reminder of what could go wrong when diplomacy fails and showcases what’s at stake. It is far better than a mediocre much thanks to the dynamic between actors but doesn’t deliver on other areas thus it maintains as a decent film.

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