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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Movie Review-Defiance

In the movie Defiance, Daniel Craig playing Tuvia, one of the historic Bielski brothers, saves Jewish exiles from Nazi death squads by trekking through the forests he explored during his childhood.  Photo Courtesy Paramount Vantage
In the movie Defiance, Daniel Craig playing Tuvia, one of the historic Bielski brothers, saves Jewish exiles from Nazi death squads by trekking through the forests he explored during his childhood. Photo Courtesy Paramount Vantage

By Chris Webb/reporter

In the movie Defiance, Daniel Craig playing Tuvia, one of the historic Bielski brothers, saves Jewish exiles from Nazi death squads by trekking through the forests he explored during his childhood.  Photo Courtesy Paramount Vantage
In the movie Defiance, Daniel Craig playing Tuvia, one of the historic Bielski brothers, saves Jewish exiles from Nazi death squads by trekking through the forests he explored during his childhood. Photo Courtesy Paramount Vantage

Defiance serves as one of those rare gems that manages to break away from the pack of generic World War II movies that roll out without fail year after year. It distinguishes itself as a truly memorable movie experience.

Set during the early stages of the war, Defiance details the amazing mission of two Jewish brothers living in Germany who must flee to the forests they grew up in to survive. Since this film is based on actual events, the plot already has a strong breath of life, but what truly makes this movie stand out is the characters.

Daniel Craig’s newfound fans looking for more gun-slinging high-octane action in league with his recent James Bond blockbusters may not appreciate the serious tone and slow pace of Defiance. But anyone who begins the movie bereft of preconceptions will immediately sympathize and become attached to the Bielski brothers, Tuvia (Craig) and Zus (Liv Schreiber).

The brothers break from the stereotype of helpless victims with no escape from the wrath of the Nazi’s extermination by taking matters into their own hands and fighting back, even if pitchforks are the only readily available weaponry.

Both Craig and Schreiber put forth Oscar-worthy performances that will have viewers cheering them on and accepting their humanizing flaws along the way.

Tuvia serves as the voice of reason throughout much of the pivotal decisions. But, like his brother Zus, who seems consumed with vengeance, he isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty and give the Nazis a taste of their own medicine. Certain dramatic scenes draw the audience in deeper than the average movie by forcing viewers to consider what they would do when faced with situations that require flexible morals to survive or face extermination.

Director Edward Zwick adds numerous sideshows to the brothers’ makeshift forest community ranging from conflict to romance, but most of these side stories feel underdeveloped and take away from the central plot.

Defiance is both a heartwarming and heart-wrenching true story that can force a tear down even the most weathered of cheeks and will have history buffs running for the library after leaving the theater.

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