Netflix regularly offers new content and we invite you to discover a drama that revisits history and has just entered the top 10 most watched content in France. Directed behind the scenes of the controversial Munich Agreement to prevent Hitler’s invasion of Europe in 1938.
This film is The Vice of Munich, a British period drama directed by Christian Schwochow who has already made a name for himself having directed Paula, On the other side of the wall or more recently I am Karl. The German filmmaker is back with this new film produced for Netflix, which is the adaptation of Robert Harris’ novel Munich.
what does it say
Inspired by real events, this film stages the Munich Accords of 1938 through the prism of two fictional characters, Englishman Hugh Legat, played by George MacKay (1917) and German Paul von Hartmann, portrayed on screen by Jannis Niewöhner. In September 1938, Neville Chamberlain decided to go to Munich to meet Adolf Hitler in order to prevent Europe from going to war. Also present are Legat and Hartmann, former comrades from Oxford University. The first works for Chamberlain’s cabinet, the second for Hitler’s cabinet. They had split after falling out over the Fuhrer’s political decisions. No longer trusting Hitler, Hartmann persuades Hugh to meet him with Chamberlain to explain to him Hitler’s real plans to avoid war, whatever happens.
History buffs will surely remember that Neville Chamberlain swung these chords to proclaim that it was “peace for our time.” Less than a year after this episode, however, World War II began.
A historical drama that lacks ambition
Though the film earns a spot in the top 10 most-watched content on the streaming platform, critics agree that The Vise of Munich portrays this historic event “from the small end of the binoculars,” as Le Parisien points out.
Even if the staging offers moments of intensity, this political-historical drama lacks boldness and is generally considered too smooth. The historical event and the magnitude of this episode are not emphasized enough.
A beautiful cast to carry the film
However, we can count on clean artistic direction and a beautiful cast, especially with August Diehl (Inglorious Basterds) playing a suspicious bodyguard of Hitler’s and Jeremy Irons impersonating the British Prime Minister, allowing us genuine sympathy for the character he portrays , although historically the latter gave the impression of having made a pact with the devil to keep the peace in Europe.
The cast is completed by Sandra Hüller (Toni Erdmann), Jessica Brown Findlay (Downton Abbey) and Alex Jennings (The Crown).
On the other hand, the film mainly focuses on Adolf Hitler, played by Ulrich Matthes, who does not offer such a perfect portrayal as in Goebbels im Untergang.
The film can be considered an excellent made-for-TV film, but it still lacks the ingredients to be considered a major historical production.
The vice of Munich, you will understand, takes up the story and can be observed. If you want to find out, it’s been available on Netflix since January 21st.