Defiance

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Released 2008

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5.7
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Movie Summary

Director:
Edward Zwick
Released:
2008
Rating:
R

Defiance, released in 2009 and directed by Edward Zwick, follows three Jewish brothers as they escape the clutches of the Germans during World War II. Although their family did not make it, the three brothers, Tuvia Bielski (Daniel Craig), Zus Bielski (Liev Schreiber), and Asael Bielski (Jamie Bell), hide in the woods that they have known of as kids and try to survive the horror of the holocaust. Just surviving isn't good enough anymore and the brothers plot to avenge the death of the victims of the tyranny of the Germans. Tuvia, the leader, is counted on to make the tough decisions, but Zus believes Tuvia's plans will ruin them all, and Asael is caught in the middle of his older brothers squabbles. As word of their heroic deeds gets out and winter draws nearer, women and children, young and old, join in the fight to stop the terror that the Germans have caused.

Metacritic Score

  • 50

    The New York Times A.O. Scott

    Defiance presents itself as an explicit correction of the cultural record, a counterpoint to all those lachrymose World War II tales of helplessness and victimhood. This is a perf...

  • 50

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    Defiance has some genuine strengths but also some weaker elements, and these opposing traits battle it out kind of the way the contentious Bielskis fought not only the Germans but ...

  • 50

    Variety Todd McCarthy

    A potentially exceptional story is told in a flatly unexceptional manner.

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    Themes

    Psychological, Historical, Thrillers, Military & War, Crime