Filmmaker Stephane Brize created a rousing ‘cri de coeur’ for the proletariat with his critically acclaimed feature, The Measure of a Man (Le loi du marche – literally, The law of the market), with the electrifying At War, he channels the spirit underpinning the current yellow jackets movement long before it began.
This time the protagonist is a leader of people, rather than a follower.
At War starts with its clarion call already sounded.
The protagonist, Laurent Amedeo is the voice of a 1,100-strong workforce facing a factory shutdown, despite heavy financial sacrifices on the part of the employees and record profits for that year.
They decide to fight this brutal decision, ready to do anything to save their jobs.
Presenting a ‘verite’ enhanced by news and protest reportage, director Brize displays elements of his Belgian contemporaries, the Dardennes brothers, and Britain’s champion of the working class, Ken Loach, in both the style and structure of At War.
The result is a rousing rally against injustice, given even more grunt by the sheer energy and conviction of Vincent Lindon in the lead, who delivers depth to a well-rounded character who far exceeds mere brawn and bluster.
When you’ve seen At War you will want to see Louise Michel (2008), and the Dardennes’ Two Days, and One Night (2014).
A MOVIE NOT TO MISS
At War (En Guerre)
French Film Festival at Palace Cinemas across Australia from early March into April.
Session times, dates and locations on line.