3/4

Allied [2016] ★★★

 alliedposterWorld War II movies have been around since…well World War II, that you start to wonder if there’s still room for more. But I have faith in director Robert Zemeckis (“Cast Away”, “Forrest Gump”) and I have nothing but admiration for Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard. They play intelligence officer Max Vatan and French Resistance fighter Marianne Beausejour, who meet in Casablanca in 1942 to execute a deadly mission. They bond, fall in love and later on get married in London. What happens next? You’ll have to see for yourself. Suffices to say that from the casting of Pitt and Cotillard to the brilliant depiction of life during wartime (with a keen eye for detail), Zemeckis has managed to deliver the goods. Fans of war movies, and the lead actors in particular, should be eminently pleased. Pitt is tremendous in the role, but it’s Cotillard who anchors the film with an unforgettable performance. Ultimately, “Allied” means to grab us hard from the very first moment and never let go. As someone who loves movies set in the 1940’s, I was instantly hooked. It may not be flawless, but it kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. That’s enough for me to recommend it.

1 reply »

  1. This is my review, I would love to hear your feedback on it

    Well, I had high expectations for this one. It is a movie that no matter how bad it might turn to be I just have to see it. The reason being is Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard.

    The movie opens with a stunning shot of Pitt landing in a parachute in the Moroccan desert. And speaking of stunning shots, the movie overall is visually rich and very pleasant to watch; with Pitt’s and Cotillard’s amazing costumes, Robert Zemeckis delicate direction, and the beautiful sets in Morocco and London, the movie sets a nostalgic romantic mode and takes you back to the Golden age of cinema. As this was intentional by the director, you soon realize that he is trying too hard, at least in the first part of the film. The first half of the movie (before Pitt is informed that his wife might be a German spy) is packed with short scenes with Zemeckis trying to give you that 40s feel. The pace is odd with very short scenes just to move the story forward. There are plenty <1min scenes with beautiful framing and costumes that don't build up very well together, given the effort put in them. I mean there is this one scene that establishes the location and then moves to a well dressed Cotillard and Pitt having lunch and Cotillard says "It is too Hot" and that's it! And BTW expect to hear a lot of french in the first half. However, Cotillard keeps the first half engaging with her beauty and witty acting while Pitt speaks only when necessary and suddenly he asks her to marry him which, in my opinion, falls flat without proper build up like other incidents in the movie.

    The second half takes on a major turn, it was like putting on a new movie. We are now in London and year had passed. While the first half was Cotillard centered, the second revolved mainly around Pitt who delivered a stunning performance. He is informed that his wife is suspected to be a German spy. The background story provided about how Cotillard might be Spy is solid and not another cliché. The screenwriter deserve much credit here as the story is strong and doesn't leave any loose ends. This makes you stay at the edge of your seat during the second half of the film. Pitt denies the news about his wife (as any truth begins with denial). He then takes matters into his own hands trying to find the truth. For that he had to travel to France for a night to see a drunk man with one arm and on the way he fights some Nazis, this was a very nice small turn in the movie. Meanwhile, we are wondering just like Pitt whether is she a spy or not? The movie doesn't have a happy ending, but I loved how both characters were faced with very strong choices and had to take an action while still showing love to each other. Overall, the second half of the film makes up for the lows of the first half and makes Allied a solid WWII movie featuring two beautiful lead actors.

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