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Truth may be found in small acts of defiance.
This is a powerful and moving view of the ambiguity of international justice (and maybe anyone seeking a just outcome). The writing is spare, almost barren, so the actors must bring the story to life. Kerry Fox, Anamaria Marinca, Stephen Dillane, Rolf Lassgård, Alexander Fehling, Tarik Filipovic,provide remarkable nuanced performances. While the pacing is slow, it is necessary to appreciate the moral and ethical ambiguity that both the prosecutor and victim must endure in their pursuits of justice, or truth. (You may remember Anamaria Marinca in Four Months, Three Weeks and Two Days (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1032846/) a heart breaking story of two women struggling in Ceauceseau's Romania).
The writing provides multiple points of conflict but there is little resolution, at least not that American audiences are accustomed to. There won't be a speech into the camera delivered with the intensity of Sean Penn. Instead, there will be small acts of defiance - which may not be as dramatic as American audiences are accustomed to seeing - but they are delivered with no less moral courage.
Watch for small but poignant scenes between Kerry Fox and the President of the tribunal, or between Kerry Fox's character and her immediate boss. Is the prosecutor merely acting as a person that is bitter about losing out on a promotion or is he she motivated by higher purposes? Is Anamaria Marinca's character motivated to release a personal secret or seek justice? (See if you think her character is seeking redemption and release from testifying. The relationship with her husband and how she deals with her secret are telling.) This is not a person that would tell the world on Oprah - she seeks something greater than personal therapy.)
The title remains intriguing. What storm are they referring to? The vicious acts that set into motion the plot? Or the response of the prosecutor and the victim to not only the criminal acts but the manner by which the international court decides to confront them?
Don't pay any attention to the New York Times review. The reviewer missed the mark. While I agree with the reviewer that the movie was slow paced, I disagree that it fails to maintain its promise by the end. This is a movie that is consistent and powerful to the end. We may not be satisfied with the result, but welcome to the ambiguities of life.
See this film!
The Best of Enemies (1961)
One of the 50 best films
This movie is an little known gem. The movie not only sparkles with Sordi's more slapstick humor and Niven's classic underplaying, it also masterfully captures the madness, humor and struggle of those engaged in combat. Niven and Sordi struggle to stay connected to their humanity in North African desert during a war where first one has the advantage and then the other does. If this were on DVD/VHS I would buy a copy.