Rebellion – September 14

After light and airy I hit serious and intense. Rebellion is a fictionalized account of real events about a French commando team charged with negotiating the release of hostages in an uprising in the jungles of the French colony of New Caledonia in 1988. It is election time in France and the politics have an impact on everything the lead negotiator tries to do. It is a fast-paced, action-filled but thoughtful film about the reality of war and revolution. Ten years in the making because of the still very sensitive nature of the situation and politicians who are mostly all alive and active, it took great courage to do but manages to present the story as accurately and unromantically as possible. Mathieu Kassovitz is the director, writer and lead actor in what is truly a tour de force of film making. He was there for the Q and A and we learned a great deal about the struggle to create the movie. They got absolutely no help from the French armed forces who did not want the story told. The man about whom the film is made did help since he had left the army largely over the outcome of this event. It is a hard story of trust and betrayal and while the hero of the film did his job and followed orders, his conscience would not let him continue. One of the things that totally surprized me was that throughout the film helicopters are used to transport men and supplies but in fact they had no access to any helicopters. The used wooden and cardboard models and CGI to do the scenes. You cannot tell at all which is what makes this one of the most remarkable aspects of the movie. Rather than using CGI to create dinosaurs and robots and other fantastical effects, this film used the technology to a truly artistic end. Fantastic. This is French film with subtitles and while I have dismissed French cinema in the past – I highly recommend this movie.

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