October 15, 2014
Studio: Zeitgeist Films
Director: Volker Schlöndorff
MPAA Rating: N/A
Screenwriters: Cyril Gely, Volker Schlöndorff
Starring: André Dussollier, Niels Arestrup, Burghart Klaußner
"Is Paris burning?" – Hitler asks General Dietrich von Cholitz on August 25, 1944. Volker Schlöndorff, Oscar-winning director of "The Tin Drum," dramatizes an all-night confrontation between the steely Nazi general (played by Niels Arestrup) and the wily Swedish consul-general, Raoul Nordling (played by André Dussollier). Ensconced in the legendary Hotel Meurice, on Rue de Rivoli, the two men (played with extraordinary intelligence and fervor by two of France’s greatest actors), engage in an extended battle of wits, that -- amazingly -- leaves us breathless until the film’s final moments. Based on a play by Cyril Gely, keeps the odds shifting, so just when we think the consul has won over the general, the old soldier comes back with a riposte that a new law, passed specifically for him, means death for his wife and children if he disobeys orders.