Based on the extraordinary true story of Operation Anthropoid, the WWII mission to assassinate SS General Reinhard Heydrich, the main architect behind the Final Solution and the Reich’s third in command after Hitler and Himmler.
Anthropoid is directed by Sean Ellis and stars Jamie Dornan as Jan Kubis and Cillian Murphy as Josef Gabcík. Jan and Josef returned from self imposed exile with a mission to eliminate the butcher of Prague SS General Reinhard Heydrich. After a brief history lesson the film literally drops the audience and the characters into the middle of occupied Czechoslovakia.
The film wastes no time in showing just how dangerous their mission is and throughout there are constant reminders of their fate should they be discovered. There is a lot of cloak and dagger stuff as they try to get in touch with the resistance, Uncle Hajský (Toby Jones) is their main contact and coincidently gives the audience an interesting and engaging performance.
Marie Kovárníková (Charlotte Le Bon) and Lenka Fafková (Anna Geislerová) are both introduced in order to help the parachutists hide in the plain site. However about one rather tense scene there is very little challenge to there presence. Marie and Lenka fall in love with the parachutists whom are forced to leave them behind to complete their mission to take out Heydrich.
Over the course of the film there is a lot of drama which does a decent job of holding your attention. However once we get to the assassination attempt the film pivots from cloak and dagger to a rather intense manhunt from a ruthless and efficient enemy who use every trick in the book from torture to the promise of great reward to find our parachutists whom have taken refuge in a nearby church.
Hiding in the church are several other parachutists each with their own mission however there only real use is to participate in the film closing sequence. This sequence sees Jan and Joseph in separate areas desperately fighting for their lives and while the resistance is futile they put up a valiant fight.
However nothing could prepare me that final shot and the silence that ensued. The sound on that final scene was incredibly well done and ver moving, in fact the sound for the whole film was really rather good. Not only is the sound good but so to are the performances, especially from our two mains leads who were both believable and very real about what they were going through.
Anthropoid is a pretty decent war film which some really good performances, lots of great sound work and some impressive sequences. However while it was a good film I can’t see it being at all remembered as being one of the greats in the war film category but if you are looking for something decent or just different then I would highly recommend checking out Anthropoid.
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