The Final Days is the true story of Germany's most famous anti-Nazi heroine brought to life. Sophie Scholl is the fearless activist of the underground student resistance group, The White Rose. Using historical records of her incarceration, the film re-creates the last six days of Sophie Scholl's life: a journey from arrest to interrogation, trial and sentence in 1943 Munich. Unwavering in her convictions and loyalty to her comrades, her cross-examination by the Gestapo quickly escalates into a searing test of wills as Scholl delivers a passionate call to freedom and personal responsibility that is both haunting and timeless. Written by
Sophie Scholl, at one point of her trial, tells the judge and his cronies, as well as the audience of cowards attending the proceedings, that soon they all will be seating in the place she is now occupying. History proved her right as most of the same people that condemned her for treason were proved to be the real traitors.
Marc Rothemund, the director, working on Fred Beinersdorfer's screen play, presents us with a courageous figure, Sophie Scholl, who saw the atrocities the Third Reich was doing to her country and dared to speak about it when confronted by the regime.
Sophie was part of the student's organization, White Rose, that wanted to inform the German people about facts that were never challenged by anyone because of the consequences such action would mean for whoever spoke the truth. Sophie and her brother were instrumental for several pamphlets informing the population about things that the regime's propaganda didn't tell the German people. Sophie mentioned the unmentionable, the extermination of the Jews, and even the elimination of sick children by people gone mad.
The main part of the film involves the interrogation Robert Mohr subjects Sophie as soon as she is arrested. In their exchange Sophie shows an amazing courage and never is seen as being scared of what will happen to her. After she admits to the charges, even Mohr seems to be amazed by her intelligence and resolve.
Julia Jentsch is the main reason for seeing this movie. Ms. Jentsch gives a luminous performance as the woman who challenged the higher ups in charge of her country. Gerald Alexander Held, who is seen as Robert Mohr, makes an impression as the man who questions Sophie's motives and tries to break her spirit. Johanna Gastdorf is seen as the kind Else, who shares a cell with Sophie.
"Sophie Scholl" is an intelligent film that shows a talented director, Marc Rothemund, and a bright young star of the German cinema, Julia Jentsch, in a film about courage and decency during a crazy time where all hope seemed to have disappeared from Germany.
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