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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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I would classify this movie as blockbuster material, more for what it attempts to say about how human nature copes with adversity than how it says it. The film covers the wartime adventures of a Polish-Jewish family, the Bielskis, as it rallies a group of Jews in the southeastern mountainous part of the country against the Nazi occupiers. There are a number of obstacles facing the brothers as they doggedly lead their little band of terrified Jews made up of escapees from the ghettos: infighting, intimidation, treachery, anti-semitism and limited resources all threaten to do them in at various times in the story. For the first two years of the movement, the chief problem centers on the diverging views of the two older brothers who are leading the movement: one wants to embark on a campaign of retribution while the other wants to build a zionistic organization that stresses cooperation and peaceful co-existence. While these internal conflicts are eventually resolved, they take a terrible toll on the structure of the community on the run. Life for these fledgling Jews is one of constantly being alert to very real danger around their encampments. The main attraction of this dramatization is this very palpable tension and fear mixed with hope that seem to drive the film to a very powerful climax. It is only through this very tangible playing out of anxiety in the story does the viewer get to appreciate its defining moments of deliverance. Daniel Craig plays a superb role as one of the brothers in providing both resolute and intelligent leadership to an often disorganized and unappreciative band of rag-tag Jews lost in their own despair. It is no coincidence that this story is meant to mirror the ancient exodus from Egypt, with the two brothers representing Aaron and Moses. Overall, a worthwhile watch for the fact that its draws from both modern and ancient times.
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on September 28, 2009
This is an incredible movie. Daniel Craig and his fellow actors are so thoroughly convincing. World War 2 was hell for so many people and for once a movie shows what ordinary people are willing to do in order to live, exist and carry on even though things seem to be at the lowest ebb. The movie is gritty, heartbreaking and totally believable. The burtality of WW2 is brutally portrayed but undoubtedly not as bad as it really was at that time.
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on September 19, 2010
I watched the trailer for this movie and saw that Daniel Craig was in it so I rented it. Little did I know that it would one of the most touching, heart-wrenching movies I have seen in years. The emotion, fear, and atmosphere of Nazi Germany was beautifully depicted in a film that keeps you rooting for the vastly outnumbered underdogs in the most impossible of situations. The acting was unforgettable and added exponentially to the beauty of the film. The casting crew really deserves an applause on the job they did, especially with the young actor they cast as Asael and their pick for Zus. This movie was so touching that I was prompted to do quite a bit of research on the topic and found myself marvelling at the story all over again. I would highly recommend this movie to anyone, but one has to be in the mental mind state to return to a horrendous, frightening time in history. If you didn't enjoy Schindler's List or the Pianist, this movie might not be for you, otherwise it is a very well-done movie that keeps a fairly fast-pace and explores a serious issue, a sad time, and the strength of the human spirit.
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on October 20, 2012
For those who haven't seen this movie, I recommend it highly. It gives you the chance to see Daniel Craig as an actor outside of the traditional Bond role. He pulls it off quite well. Liev Schrieber is very impressive and quite convincing in his role, as well.The story is based upon truth and is very touching. Those of us who have had the luxury of never having to deal with such horror easily forget the level of bravery and commitment these people had during World War 2. It's a great story with fairly good character development. Script is quite good and the special effects are kept to a minimum.Not too many shaky camera shots and a minimum of quick edits for effect. It's just a good movie. I have watched it more than once and will watch it many more times. It's worth the money.
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on July 19, 2009
I had great anticipation for this movie after seeing the trailer for it. And the full feature didn't disappoint.

The story flows along nicely, keeping to key events while allowing the viewer to keep focus on what is going on.
Subplots added greatly to the story, while managing to not impede upon the main story at hand.

The performances in the movie from all actors were top notch. They were believable, which made it easy to dive into the film and forget that it was a movie.

Defiance has great dialogue, well balanced action, timely suspense, and the proper dose of humanity all swirled together.

I highly recommend this movie to anyone who appreciates the great re-telling of true events.
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on June 17, 2013
This is a great movie at an awesome price. Great quality and bonus features. Really glad I own this on blu ray
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on September 21, 2012
As I've said before, movies based on real life are my preference. This movie was very well put together as it depicted the life trials of the Jews hiding from the Germans. I would definately recommend this movie to anyone, if I could rate it higher, I would.
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on July 7, 2009
I'm doing a review of this movie mainly because I felt that the one-star rating given to the regular DVD version is pretty cruel. If you look at the Rotten Tomatoes film rating site, Defiance gets about a 56% rating over there, and I think that's fairly accurate.

The problem with Defiance is that there isn't really any story, or at least any story arc. All these people go into hiding in the forest, they have very minimal adventures there, and at the end... at the climax after the big battle scene... they're still hiding in the forest. There's no "escape from alcatraz" moment when everything comes to a head... although I guess the final battle scene was meant to be that type of moment (if so it doesn't work).

So Craig and Schreiber are fine in the lead roles, but despite the intended tension and rivalry between their characters, their relationship seems kind of flat as well.

All in all... this movie is weak, but it isn't as terrible as the one star rating mentioned above.
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on July 13, 2009
oh boy its got violence and foul language
isnt that shocking in a war movie.
this is a true story
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on December 22, 2012
This movie is a depiction of the suffering endured by the people of these regions. It opens a window on WW11 that is seldom seen. don't miss this movie.
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