JOBLO'S MOVIE REVIEWS

SEARCH BY TITLE # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Munich (2005)
star Printer-Friendly version
Review Date: February 14, 2006
Director: Steven Spielberg
Writer: Tony Kushner, Eric Roth
Producers: Kathleen Kennedy, Steven Spielberg, Colin Wilson, Barry Mendel
Actors:
Eric Bana as Avner
Daniel Craig as Steve
Geoffrey Rush as Ephraim
Plot:
Inspired by real-life events, this film takes place after the Munich Olympics tragedy of 1972, during which Arab terrorists stormed the Israeli athletes’ compound, and ultimately ended up killing all 11 members of their team. Israel, pissed at the ‘rabs who perpetrated these heinous crimes, decides to set up a “death squad”, if you will, to travel the world and whack out all people who they believe were behind the terrorist killings. Thrills, vengeance and moral dilemmas ensue…
Critique:
This was a great movie in a plentitude of manners, but at the end of the day, at the end of the film and its message, I simply didn’t find myself emotionally entangled in the lives and cares of the people leading the show, and when a film is trying to make a point as hard as this one, I think that’s pretty important. Does that mean that the movie didn’t complete its mission? Well, according to me, it didn’t fully, but many others have seen and adored the picture, so who knows…maybe it’s just a matter of opinion, personality or mood when you see the movie. That said, there are many things about the film that I can’t dismiss, including the impressive direction by Spielberg (some great tension-filled scenes), the solid acting across the board (how and why Eric Bana has been ignored by most every end-of-year award show is beyond me!) and even its important message about vengeance, guilt, loyalty and love of family/love of country. If anything, I believe the film’s final half hour was its strongest with many of the lead players beginning to question their own actions, beliefs, motives and morals, while the film’s first two-thirds plays more like a straight-forward revenge thriller. I was actually waiting for the movie to get more involved in the characters’ minds, and wasn’t disappointed with Bana’s grappling in the end, although like I mentioned earlier, his grappling intrigued me…but didn’t grab me emotionally, which I really wanted. The film is also filled with plenty of memorable scenes and lines (“Don’t forget the receipts”), an excellent sense of foreboding and plenty of intriguing political switcheroos, many of which the members of the team begin to question after a while, just like the audience.

I was personally a little disappointed in the lack of time spent on screen by Daniel Craig (you know, the next James Bond), especially since I didn’t even realize what his character was doing as part of the team until the film’s final half hour or so – before then, he was just sitting around a lot. I also didn’t appreciate the film’s focus on bombs, not because I have anything against the act of bombing terrorists per se, but because it simply started to get on my nerves as the main strategy of these people, particularly with the inherent problems that seemed to come with it. I think the film’s mid-section could also have been compacted a little, as the hits against the “black list” members started to feel redundant after a while—they could have squeezed a couple of them into colorful montages and added more character introspection, if you ask me. That said, the hits were all pretty unique, Bana was awesome throughout, especially in his more private moments with his family and self, the ending was predictable, but still poignant enough to make one re-think the logic of revenge, an “eye for an eye” and all that jazz, and you gotta give the film points for all of its technical merits including cinematography, sound, editing and direction, all of which helped give the picture a resoundingly more authentic look and feel – always important in films “inspired” or “based” on true events. Which reminds me…all of the flashbacks to the actual Munich tragedy were well-crafted and worked. All in all, a great movie with an excellent showing by Bana, that dares to ask important questions about the ongoing issues in the Middle East, as well as the ongoing battles between home countries, terrorist organizations and/or freedom fighters. Whose side are you on? Let’s talk.
(c) 2016 Berge Garabedian
Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

6:24PM on 05/09/2006
Spielberg's latest film confirms the director's status as among the best in the business. MUNICH is, in my opinion, Spielberg's strongest film in years, made all the more gut-wrenching by the fact that it's based on true events. Now, in someone else's hands, this would have been another "based on a true story featuring paper-thin characters and cliched plot moves" type of film, but thankfully, that is far from the case.

Why Eric Bana was not nominated for an Oscar for his role here is beyond
Spielberg's latest film confirms the director's status as among the best in the business. MUNICH is, in my opinion, Spielberg's strongest film in years, made all the more gut-wrenching by the fact that it's based on true events. Now, in someone else's hands, this would have been another "based on a true story featuring paper-thin characters and cliched plot moves" type of film, but thankfully, that is far from the case.

Why Eric Bana was not nominated for an Oscar for his role here is beyond me. There's one scene in which he is talking to his wife on the phone, and his baby daughter says "da-da." Watch how Bana bursts into tears, and tell me if you don't get the urge to do the same. I also enjoyed the overall comraderie of the team, and each of their own quirky qualities as well as their own enigmas.

Let it be known that Spielberg not only knows how to create great drama, but he is a true master of suspense, and this film holds nothing back in terms of tension and violence. I also loved the film's technical aspects, including the heartwrenching score by John Williams, the use of sound, and the beautiful cinematography.

Sure, the film does linger close to the 3-hour mark, but this is a journey well worth the time. Steven Spielberg delivers yet another homerun.
Your Reply:



2:37AM on 02/22/2006
Steven Spielberg's Munich is a thoughtful and gripping near masterpiece. The performances are all excellent from top to bottom and as a thriller is crackling good. Some extraordinarily suspenseful and exciting moments. Yet the thing about the movie that left the biggest impression on me was the violence. In most movies, the violence is rather cartoonish. But in this movie, the violence feels very much real. It's ugly and disturbing and viscerally charged. Some of it is actually hard to
Steven Spielberg's Munich is a thoughtful and gripping near masterpiece. The performances are all excellent from top to bottom and as a thriller is crackling good. Some extraordinarily suspenseful and exciting moments. Yet the thing about the movie that left the biggest impression on me was the violence. In most movies, the violence is rather cartoonish. But in this movie, the violence feels very much real. It's ugly and disturbing and viscerally charged. Some of it is actually hard to watch. One of the best movies of 2005 to be sure!
Your Reply:



5:54AM on 02/20/2006

MILD SPOILERS included

Simply put: this is my favorite movie of 2005. Whether one agrees on all the points of views presented or not, I had to respect the film enormously mainly because it bothered presenting BOTH sides of the story, and some of the conversations (especially between Bana and the Jordanian in the "Safe House") are so deep and IMPORTANT. Aside from political/patriotical issues, this is also a first-rate thriller. Some scenes took my breath away (the nude assassin's death was one of the most disturbing
Simply put: this is my favorite movie of 2005. Whether one agrees on all the points of views presented or not, I had to respect the film enormously mainly because it bothered presenting BOTH sides of the story, and some of the conversations (especially between Bana and the Jordanian in the "Safe House") are so deep and IMPORTANT. Aside from political/patriotical issues, this is also a first-rate thriller. Some scenes took my breath away (the nude assassin's death was one of the most disturbing scenes I've EVER seen). Before seeing it I bashed the film a lot because I thought it would be yet another "Arabs-are-borne-terrorists" film but man was I wrong.
Shame that Eric Bana didn't get a nomination for his role. But history will mark this film as one of the most important movies of the decade.
Your Reply:



4:43PM on 02/19/2006

Absolutely Abysmal

This is one of those films that I feel guilty hating because it has received so much critical and audience praise.

That said, and guilt aside, I found Munich to be one of the longest, most painful movies I've seen in a long while. The direction was grand, the actors impressive, but it was just so...what's the appropriate word here...boring. That's about it. It was just so damned boring. As Jo said, I wasn't emotionally invested at all. Boring.

I was counting down how many more
This is one of those films that I feel guilty hating because it has received so much critical and audience praise.

That said, and guilt aside, I found Munich to be one of the longest, most painful movies I've seen in a long while. The direction was grand, the actors impressive, but it was just so...what's the appropriate word here...boring. That's about it. It was just so damned boring. As Jo said, I wasn't emotionally invested at all. Boring.

I was counting down how many more people they needed to kill, excitedly anticipating the movie's end.

Also, probably the most disturbing (and I don't mean that in the "it was effective" sense) and ridiculous sex scene was contained near the end of this film.

To add validity to my review, the three people I viewed the movie with were about as annoyed with the film as I was. We must have repositioned ourselves in our seats one million and nine times.

Horrid.

-Graham
Your Reply:



3:22PM on 02/18/2006
When seeing a Speilberg movie, I always expect something great, and he definatley delivered another oscar worthy movie, to add to his already laundry list of phenomenoel movies. Spielberg is just simply a poetic genius when it comes to movie making.

This movie kept my attention all the way through, (which is great kudos cause I just got out of watching Brokeback, and then went straight to Munich) The story is slow at points, but still very gripping, and also allows the viewer to come to
When seeing a Speilberg movie, I always expect something great, and he definatley delivered another oscar worthy movie, to add to his already laundry list of phenomenoel movies. Spielberg is just simply a poetic genius when it comes to movie making.

This movie kept my attention all the way through, (which is great kudos cause I just got out of watching Brokeback, and then went straight to Munich) The story is slow at points, but still very gripping, and also allows the viewer to come to their own conclusion whether what they do is just. Granted he shows the horrors of what the Palestineans did to the Isreali athletes, but he doesnt necessarily mark them as evil, or "the bad guy". Another thing I thuroughly enjoyed was Eric Bana, along with Geoffery Rush. In my opinion did a fantastic job! All the other characters where perfectly cast, but those two stood out more than anyother.

The only things that didn't tickle my fancy about this movie was, towards the middle-end, it kinda loses itself for a little while, and then the ending is kinda lack luster, but in all honesty i really can;t think of another way he could of ended it while trying to keep with what he was trying to get across.

I highly recommend this movie, If I could I would actully give it a 8.5/10


Your Reply:



9:55PM on 02/15/2006
To me, Spielberg can do no wrong. He just knows how to make a compelling, suspenseful drama that not only keeps the viewer interested throughout, but adds a lot of character, emotion, and backbone to a movie based on real events. But instead of focusing on one of the biggest tragedies in human and Olympic history, he instead focuses on what the backlash that occurred after the event and the moral issues of that backlash.

While the movie isn't the fastest movie ever produced, you're never
To me, Spielberg can do no wrong. He just knows how to make a compelling, suspenseful drama that not only keeps the viewer interested throughout, but adds a lot of character, emotion, and backbone to a movie based on real events. But instead of focusing on one of the biggest tragedies in human and Olympic history, he instead focuses on what the backlash that occurred after the event and the moral issues of that backlash.

While the movie isn't the fastest movie ever produced, you're never disinterested because of the events that occur - the killings, the bombings, and the preparations for each that precede the actions. But what makes this movie even better is the underlying theme of the futility of the Israelis' actions. Their actions, which were in response to terrorist acts, would only prompt more action by their enemies and so forth. And this issue speaks truths even to this day.

The moral issues are brought to light by the five characters that carry out the Israelis' revenge. Whether they're conflicted or feel that the revenge is justified, they continue to do what they're job requires through means of secrecy, terrorism, and more illegal means. The group is lead by Eric Bana's character, who is the symbol of morality in the picture - his character is torn between the ethics of it all while he is haunted by the tragedy.

Spielberg is a master of these dramas. The violence is not glorified, instead it is subdued, quieted, and quick. He adds flashbacks that contribute to character development and I freakin' love the way he places his characters in relation to the camera - that's just me. This is a great movie with interesting characters, moral dilemmas, and a story and pace that will keep you interested throughout. Any fan of Schindler's List and Saving Private Ryan should enjoy this movie as well because Spielberg continues the storytelling style and his filmmaking expertise that made the other two future classics.
Your Reply:



9:54PM on 02/15/2006

Munich not As Good As Schindler's List?

I liked this movie however in the end I felt a little of emotion for the characters. (A good example for a movie with a plethora of emotion for its characters is Schindler's List..So Sad!) I loved Daniel Craig's character...so f***ing funny!! Great non-propoganda movie. I gave it an 8/10
I liked this movie however in the end I felt a little of emotion for the characters. (A good example for a movie with a plethora of emotion for its characters is Schindler's List..So Sad!) I loved Daniel Craig's character...so f***ing funny!! Great non-propoganda movie. I gave it an 8/10
Your Reply:



JoBlo's T-Shirt Shoppe | support our site... Wear Our Gear!