Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The War of the Vendee DVD Review

I recently watched the new DVD release of 'The War of the Vendee.' The movie covers the history of the region in France where devout Catholics assembled to oppose the terrors of the French Revolution. This movie is unique in many respects. First and foremost, it is boldly Catholic, which is obviously unique in the movie industry. This is refreshing, since recent movies like 'The Way' with Martin Sheen, do not depict a strong Catholic character. Everything about this movie is Catholic, and I like that. Secondly, it is a movie in which the cast consists of all Catholic youth. The Catholic faith of the cast and the director is what really drives the film, and this makes it a joy to watch, as long as you let the film stand on its own terms. Let me explain further.

First, do not expect to see a Catholic version of 'Braveheart.' Yes, the cinematography is done beautifully, and the film colors are bright and lucid. The sound quality is also excellent. The special effects however are of a low budget. The canon fire is subdued and the musket fire is not bold or thundering as in many modern war films. So don't expect to see the battle sequences of 'The Patriot' or something of that caliber. The battle sequences are more tongue and cheek, and while casualties are depicted, they are not very graphic in nature. For a group of kids, the acting is not bad, but again, do not expect Hollywood here. These are kids trying to memorize scripts. Some are more talented in their acting than others, but don't let that discourage you.

What also makes this movie unique, is that the entire family can watch it together and enjoy it. There is no profanity or graphic gory violence. The memory of what happened to Catholics during the Revolution is worth keeping alive, and I am glad that this movie sought to do just that. It depicts a clear battle between good and evil, and it is done with the intention of giving glory to God. The director and writer of the movie, Jim Morlino compares the film to a 90 minute prayer, and I think that defines it well. I think the DVD is worth owning and it will make a good family evening at the movies. It has over 60 minutes of extra features including one that explains the history of 'The War of the Vendee,' which was a severe Catholic persecution, one which has been buried in the history books of France, and long forgotten. Remember to take the movie for what it is, and then sit back and enjoy it!

1 comment:

KnotWilbur said...

I happily agree with your review. I'd seen the trailer for this some time ago, and bought the movie, along with it's predecessor (Bernadette of Lourdes), about a month ago. It's a pleasure to find a genuinely Catholic movie, about a time we need to remember, especially these days. My thirteen year-old and I watched it together, and she loved it. I'd recommend this highly.