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The War Is Over (1966)
"La guerre est finie" (original title)

 -  Drama | War  -  11 May 1966 (France)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 1,140 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 10 critic

Diego is one of the chief of the spanish Communist Party. He is travelling back to Paris (where he lives) from a mission in Madrid. He is arrested at the border for an identity check but ... See full summary »

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Title: The War Is Over (1966)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Marianne
...
Nadine Sallanches
Jean Dasté ...
Le chef du réseau clandestin / Chief
Dominique Rozan ...
Jude
Jean-François Rémi ...
Juan
Marie Mergey ...
Madame Lopez
...
L'inspecteur des douanes / First Customs Inspector
Anouk Ferjac ...
Marie Jude
Roland Monod ...
Antoine
Pierre Decazes ...
L'employé SNCF / Station Employee
...
Roberto
Claire Duhamel ...
La femme du wagon-restaurant / Traveller
Antoine Bourseiller ...
L'homme du wagon-restaurant / Traveller
Laurence Badie ...
Bernadette Pluvier
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Storyline

Diego is one of the chief of the spanish Communist Party. He is travelling back to Paris (where he lives) from a mission in Madrid. He is arrested at the border for an identity check but manages to go free thanks to Nadine, the daughter of the man whose passport is used by him. When he arrives in Paris, he starts searching one of his comrades, Juan, to prevent him from going to Madrid where he could be arrested by Franco's police... Written by Yepok

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

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Release Date:

11 May 1966 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The War Is Over  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Past and Presence
27 January 2011 | by (Finland) – See all my reviews

Alain Resnais was part of the so-called Left Bank of the French New Wave, alongside with Varda, Marker and Demy, who were politically much more aware compared to the film fanatics of Cahiers du Cinema (Rohmer, Truffaut, Rivette, Godard, Chabrol). Alain Resnais has always been interested in past but here he focuses on its impact with regards to the future. The War Is Over was his fourth feature, following Hiroshima mon amour, Last Year in Marienbad and Muriel, and still remains as one of the finest films of political cinema. The film builds around the theme of how to come to terms with one's past in order to live in peace with the present. No other place -- maybe Germany or Poland -- offers such a great setting for this but Spain because the shadows of the Civil War are so present. It is a milieu that has become the symbol of the war, so to speak.

Diego Mora (Yves Montad) is an old man who spent his youth as a revolutionary in the Spanish Civil War. Now, thirty years later, he's part of a group that wants to redeem the dreams of the revolution in Paris. All the members of the group are living in the past, and so is Diego. But soon he has a moment of realization and breaks himself away from the chains of illusion and decides to make a change. Thus, The War Is Over is really a story about a man who is living a lie. It tells, rather bleakly in a melancholy tone, about old communists who can't let go off the past.

The War Is Over might just be Resnais' most satisfying work when it comes to somewhat coherent viewing experience. It's his first film with a clear storyline which is relatively easy to follow even if the editing was deliberately (but not self-deliberate!) ambiguous and confusing. Resnais has succeeded perfectly to relay the flow of time. Moreover, through the character played by Yves Montand the viewer can understand the director's thoughts and emotions, no matter how shattered, because he holds the pieces together. It is he through whom the viewer constructs the big picture.

In The War Is Over memories are created for the future. Alain Resnais doesn't try to build the horrors of the past by newsreel footage. He relays the tragedy of the conditions by showing how people are still living in the past, how they are left with unredeemed dreams in their hands. The dream has died in Spain. Of course, Spain is still there but merely as a concrete place full of tourists. People don't understand each other. There is a major breakdown in the communication between the old and the new left. Both are dreaming of a revolution but in their own ways. The legacy of the past torments the protagonist. However, he is not only forced to recall the past endlessly but also to be unable to understand the present reality.


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