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"THE STATEMENT"
(2003) (Michael Caine, Tilda Swinton) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Moderate Moderate Extreme Moderate Extreme
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Minor None Mild None Mild
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Mild Mild Mild Moderate Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: A former Nazi war criminal goes on the run from both assassins and French officials who want him captured.
PLOT:
It's 1992 Provence, France and Pierre Brossard (MICHAEL CAINE) is a man on the run. Fifty years earlier, he was an officer who participated in the execution of seven Jews under orders of the Vichy government. Despite being captured, he escaped before facing justice for his war crimes and was later pardoned by the President.

Since then, however, a new law regarding crimes against humanity has been enacted and Brossard is once again a target. Not only is the government - in the form of magistrate Annemarie Livi (TILDA SWINTON) and her military liaison, Colonel Roux (JEREMY NORTHAM) -- after him, but so is a covert group of assassins who want him dead.

They could be backed by Jewish forces, or they could be an entirely different operation that doesn't want word getting out that various members of a specialized sect of the Catholic Church have been assisting Brossard.

As the Church then tries to distance itself from him and thus cuts off his supplies, the weary war criminal goes on the run again, hoping to avoid being captured or killed.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Unless they're fans of someone in the cast or are interested in history-based dramas, it doesn't seem too likely.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For violence.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • MICHAEL CAINE plays a weary, former WWII officer who's been on the run for half a century for war crimes. With the noose tightening around him from various forces, he tries to elude capture and death. He kills some assassins, drinks some, and enlists aid from corrupt church officials.
  • TILDA SWINTON plays the magistrate assigned to find and capture him. She smokes.
  • JEREMY NORTHAM plays her military liaison who assists her. He briefly uses some profanity.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this drama that's been rated R. Profanity consists of at least 6 "s" words, while a handful of other expletives and colorful phrases are uttered. Some brief and non-explicit, sexually related dialogue occurs and there might be a partial, split-second view of a man's bare butt.

    Violence consists of several lethal shootings (with bloody results) as well as some war-time executions. Some of those scenes may be unsettling or suspenseful to some viewers, while various characters and institutions have varying degrees of bad attitudes. Meanwhile, some characters drink and/or smoke, while some tense family material is briefly present.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Brossard orders a beer.
  • Roux and Annemarie have wine in a restaurant where others also have wine.
  • Brossard orders a beer where others also drink.
  • Brossard tells his wife to buy them a nice dinner and a bottle of wine.
  • People have wine with lunch.
  • Brossard orders a beer in the morning.
  • We see wine in an older man's house. Later, we see that man having some wine.
  • A miscellaneous person has a beer.
  • Brossard and a man have wine.
  • Annemarie, Roux and others have champagne.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Brossard shoots an assassin twice (with some bloody results) and then again when the man is on the ground (we see blood on his shirt and jacket).
  • Brossard washes his hands after shooting a man to death and there appears to be some blood on them.
  • Brossard shoots an assassin several times (we see blood on him and the wall around a urinal).
  • We see dried blood on a piece of paper.
  • We see traditional blood on a statue of Christ's crucifixion.
  • A man shoots another man twice, with some resultant blood on the victim's clothing.
  • We see what may be a real black and white photo of some executed people (just bodies and no blood).
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • A young Brossard during WWII orders some men to drop their pants (nothing explicit is seen) just to humiliate them. He and others then murder seven people.
  • Some viewers might not like Annemarie stating she's agnostic.
  • We hear and see that various church entities and people continue to help Brossard hide from the authorities and supply him with money, etc.
  • A priest absolves Brossard of his sin of murdering someone.
  • Assassins hired by an unknown organization attempt to murder Brossard.
  • We hear that Brossard turned in his wife's younger brother sometime in the past.
  • Brossard states that left-wing priests have ruined their faith.
  • Brossard tells his wife to "do as you're told and you'll be happy." She replies, "Not while you're alive."
  • Brossard threatens harm to his wife's dog if she doesn't do what he tells her. Later, as he leaves his wife's place, he appears to kick or kick at her dog.
  • Brossard steals a delivery truck to escape from army forces looking for him.
  • A cafe owner lies to Roux about his involvement with Brossard.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" might also be unsettling or suspenseful to viewers.
  • In black and white footage (and seen from a distance), we see soldiers with machine guns shooting several men lined up against a wall. A young Brossard then walks up and shoots one of the bodies on the ground (no blood).
  • An assassin preps his gun and then follows Brossard in his car. After getting ahead of him, he acts as if his car is broken down, flags Brossard for help and then prepares to shoot him. Instead, Brossard shoots him twice (with some bloody results) and then again when the man is on the ground (we see blood on his shirt and jacket). He then drags the body back to the car, puts it inside and then sends the car off the road and down a ravine where it flips many times before disappearing in the brush.
  • Brossard has chest pains and is out of breath.
  • We see another assassin following Brossard.
  • An assassin prepares to execute a hit on Brossard and we see him cocking his gun in the bathroom. Brossard then slowly enters the room (knowing he's there) and finds the man standing at a urinal (faking that he's using it). The assassin starts to spin around, but Brossard shoots him several times (we see blood on him and the wall around the urinal).
  • A priest helps Brossard make a rooftop escape from the army that includes Brossard having to crawl across a board between two buildings and over a high drop.
  • We see what may be a real black and white photo of some executed people (just bodies and no blood).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns/Machine Guns: Used to kill others. See "Violence" for details.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Bullsh*t," "Oh sh*t," "Shut up," "To hell with his friends," "You bastard," "How the hell did you get in?" and "Screwed up."
  • We see graffiti on several buildings.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A mild amount of such music occurs in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 6 "s" words, 1 slang term for male genitals ("pr*cks"), 2 hells, 2 uses of "My God" and 1 use each of "Oh God" and "Oh my God."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • We see brief and partial views of Roux as he gets out of the shower and wraps a towel around himself (nothing explicit and perhaps a fleeting image of part of his bare butt).
  • Brossard's wife isn't happy to see him when he unexpectedly shows up in her place, but we later see them sleeping together in the same bed (there's no indication of whether sex occurred or not).
  • Brossard asks his wife if she remembers how she thanked him for getting her a dog many years ago. He then goes on to say that she was passionate and loving.
  • There's talk that a murder victim was not Jewish because he was not circumcised (the police investigator says he knows because he was at the autopsy).
  • When Annemarie and Roux realize they're going to have to bunk together on a stakeout of sorts, she jokingly says, "So, Colonel, we finally get to sleep together." He jokingly replies, "I thought you'd never ask."
  • SMOKING
  • Annemarie smokes several times as does an assassin, while miscellaneous people smoke in several scenes.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Brossard's wife isn't happy to see him when he unexpectedly shows up in her place, but we later see them sleeping together in the same bed (there's no indication of whether sex occurred or not). Later, Brossard tells his wife to "do as you're told and you'll be happy." She replies, "Not while you're alive."
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The true story on which the film is loosely based.
  • We hear that Brossard had a Presidential pardon for his past crimes.
  • We hear and see that various church entities and people continue to help Brossard hide from the authorities and supply him with money, etc. In addition, a priest absolves Brossard of his sin of murdering someone.
  • WWII and the Vichy government in France.
  • Whether soldiers and officers should be absolved of their war crimes if they were just following orders.
  • VIOLENCE
  • In black and white footage, we see soldiers making a nighttime raid on many homes and rounding up people to be taken away. During this, we hear the sounds of things breaking inside the homes.
  • In black and white footage (and seen from a distance), we see soldiers with machine guns shooting several men lined up against a wall. A young Brossard then walks up and shoots one of the people on the ground (no blood).
  • An assassin preps his gun and then follows Brossard in his car. After getting ahead of him, he acts as if his car is broken down, flags Brossard for help and then prepares to shoot him. Instead, Brossard shoots him twice (with some bloody results) and then again when the man is on the ground (we see blood on his shirt and jacket). He then drags the body back to the car, puts it inside and then sends the car off the road and down a ravine where it flips many times before disappearing in the brush.
  • We see a brief black and white flashback of young Brossard shooting two bodies on the ground (no blood).
  • Brossard has a nightmare and we see another flashback of men being mowed down by machine guns.
  • As Brossard leaves his wife's place, he appears to kick or kick at her dog.
  • An assassin prepares to execute a hit on Brossard and we see him cocking his gun in the bathroom. Brossard then slowly enters the room (knowing he's there) and finds the man standing at a urinal (faking that he's using it). The assassin starts to spin around, but Brossard shoots him several times (we see blood on him and the wall around the urinal).
  • Roux kicks stuff in anger in an office.
  • A man shoots another man twice, with some resultant blood on the victim's clothing.



  • Reviewed November 25, 2003 / Posted January 30, 2004

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