Munich: The Edge of War Movie Review – A serviceable WW2 thriller with a few good moments

A serviceable WW2 thriller with a few good moments

War… war never changes. And when it comes to the big screen, there are no changes to the current formula of depicting World War II through every lens imaginable.

From the epic and gritty Saving Private Ryan to the intimate Downfall, all the way over to the harrowing Schindler’s List, World War II is the one war audiences never seem to grow tired of seeing. Although it could be argued that Band of Brothers, HBO’s mini-series, stands head and shoulders above all other big-screen counterparts. But that’s an argument for another day!

What’s indisputable here is that Munich: The Edge of War returns to World War II once again but this time just before the eve of battle. Two years before the events depicted in 2017’s The Darkest Hour, for those interested to know.

Germany stands on the brink of war.¬†With Hitler rising in power, he sets his sights on invading Czechoslovakia. The British government are led by Neville Chamberlain, who’s desperate for a peaceful solution to prevent Britain being thrown into a war that many people see as inevitable.

In the middle of this conflict are former classmates – a British civil servant called Hugh Legat and the other a German diplomat by the name of Paul von Hartman. These two travel to Munich on opposing sides for the upcoming peace talks, and hoping to stop war before it consumes Europe.

As many people will be aware, this story does not have a happy ending and this is the biggest crux with Munich: The Edge of War. The drama is palpable, the political debating intense but because of how well-known this period of history is, flatlines everything into predictability.

Beyond Jeremy Irons’ inspired performance as Neville Chamberlain and a few tense meetings late on, there’s not a lot else here that really stands out.

The movie is good though, don’t get me wrong. The production design is brilliant, the costuming excellent and there’s a really sinister and understated musical score that certainly elevates this picture. Unfortunately the same can’t be said for the camera work.

One review I read likened this picture to being filmed from a boat at sea and it really does feel like that at times. The handheld camera work swings wildly between characters and at times it’s so distracting it takes away from the character performances. It’s not a complete deal breaker, as it’s peppered with static shots and some nice cinematography but it’s definitely something you’ll notice a lot.

Munich: The Edge of War does have its moments but far too often this falls into the realm of “okay” rather than “okay this is really good.” That’s perhaps to be expected given how many World War II thrillers we’ve been graced with over the years.

While this isn’t scraping the bottom of the barrel, the barrel we’re served from won’t quite quench your thirst. It’s a decent watch and a nice way to kill a few hours but it’s unlikely to be a movie you’ll return to in a hurry.


Read More: Munich: The Edge of War Ending Explained

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  • Verdict - 6.5/10

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