In November 1939, Georg Elser's attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler fails, and he is arrested. During his confinement, he recalls the events leading up to his plot and his reasons for deciding to take such drastic action.
The breath-taking story of a man who nearly would have changed the world. 1939, when Hitler convinced millions of people at the height of his power, one said a radical No: Georg Elser, disparaged as an assassin, is one of the greatest resistance fighters. Written by
Important historical drama fails to live up in this movie
"13 Minutes" (2015 release from Germany; 114 min.; original title: Elser: Er hätte die Welt verändert--Elser: He Would've Changed the World") brings the story of Georg Elser. As the movie opens, we see him installing the bombing device to attempt to assassinate Hilter in Munich on November 8, 1939. Alas, the attempt fails as Hitler unexpectedly leaves earlier than planned. It's not long before Elser is picked up by the Nazis, and the interrogation starts. We then go back in time to 1932 to learn more about what drove Elser. At this point we're 15 min. into the movie but to tell you more of the plot would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: first, while I was aware of the fact that Hilter was almost assassinated at one point, this is the first time that I learn of the details of it. In theory this should make for a riveting drama. Alas, as brought by director Oliver Hirschbiegel (who previously gave us the excellent "Diana" bio-pic starring Naomi Watts), this is anything but riveting. The primary reason for this is that the acting is just all too staged, you can practically hear Hirschbiegel yell "and... ACTION!". It bothered me quite a bit, and it's a shame as this is an important "detail" of WWII that more people should understand better. Beware as well that some of the torture scenes are very intense and not easy to watch. Bottom line: this movie feels like a missed opportunity...
This movie premiered in Germany in early 2015. I have no idea what now, two and a half years later, this shows up out of the blue at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati. The early Saturday screening where I saw this at was attended so-so (5 people in total). I can't see this playing in the theater very long. If you are interested in the movie, you'll have to most likely check it out on VOD or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray.
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