7.7/10
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154 user 124 critic

Joyeux Noel (2005)

Joyeux Noël (original title)
Trailer
2:03 | Trailer
In December 1914, an unofficial Christmas truce on the Western Front allows soldiers from opposing sides of the First World War to gain insight into each other's way of life.

Director:

Christian Carion
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Diane Kruger ... Anna Sörensen (as Diane Krüger)
Natalie Dessay ... Anna Sörensen (singing voice)
Benno Fürmann ... Nikolaus Sprink
Rolando Villazón ... Nikolaus Sprink (singing voice) (as Rolando Villazon)
Guillaume Canet ... Le lieutenant Audebert
Gary Lewis ... le pasteur Palmer
Dany Boon ... Ponchel
Daniel Brühl ... le lieutenant Horstmayer
Lucas Belvaux ... Gueusselin
Alex Ferns ... Le lieutenant Gordon
Steven Robertson ... Jonathan
Frank Witter ... Jörg - un soldat allemand
Bernard Le Coq Bernard Le Coq ... Le général Audebert
Ian Richardson ... L'évêque anglais
Thomas Schmauser ... Le Kronprinz
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Storyline

In 1914, World War I, the bloodiest war ever at that time in human history, was well under way. However on Christmas Eve, numerous sections of the Western Front called an informal, and unauthorized, truce where the various front-line soldiers of the conflict peacefully met each other in No Man's Land to share a precious pause in the carnage with a fleeting brotherhood. This film dramatizes one such section as the French, Scottish and German sides partake in the unique event, even though they are aware that their superiors will not tolerate its occurrence. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Without an enemy there can be no war. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for some war violence and a brief scene of sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As of October 2009, American composer Kevin Puts was writing a full-length opera based on this film for the Minnesota Opera. The opera, called Silent Night, was premiered in Minnesota in 2011, won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for music, and was transferred to Opera Philadelphia in February 2013 with most of the same cast. Its libretto by Mark Campbell is extremely faithful to the movie's screenplay. See more »

Goofs

When the three commanders meet and discuss their wives, the French commander says he lost the photo of his wife and shows a sketch. The German commander recognizes the sketch of the woman from a photo that is inside a wallet he found on the battlefield (and subsequently returns the wallet to the French officer). However, in the beginning of the film, the French commander is looking at that photo. In the shot, the photo is of both the commander and his wife. If the German officer can recognize the wife from a sketch, surely he would recognize the French commander when seeing him in person? See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Enfant francais: Child, upon these maps do heed This black stain to be effaced Omitting it, you would proceed Yet better it in red to trace Later, whatever may come to pass Promise there to go you must To fetch the children of Alsace Reaching out their arms to us May in our fondest France Hope's green saplings to branch And in you, dear child, flower Grow, grow, France awaits its hour.
Enfant anglais: To rid the map of every trace Of Germany and of the Hun We must exterminate that race We must not leave a single ...
[...]
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Connections

Featured in The 63rd Annual Golden Globe Awards (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Adeste Fideles
(Traditional)
Lyrics by John Francis Wade
Performed by Rolando Villazón (tenor) and Griogair Lawrie (bagpipes)
See more »

User Reviews

 
An excellent movie!
25 December 2005 | by kaplunvSee all my reviews

I was sceptical before watching this film but by the end I had tears running down my cheeks.

By depicting the feelings and destinies of the soldiers, the film demonstrated the absurdity of war and how each soldier is more than a mere cannon target. It is a commentary on the utter stupidity of politics governing war events from behind curtains while not actually experiencing the real war. By depicting a unique event in European war history that occurred on Christmas day 1914 it shows viewers that Europeans can be as one even as "enemies".

About ten years ago I watched Paul McCartney's video "Pipes of Peace" and thought that what it depicted was completely fictitious--nothing more than pacifists' dreams. I have now learned that it was true.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

France | Germany | UK | Belgium | Romania | Norway | Japan | USA

Language:

French | German | English | Latin

Release Date:

9 November 2005 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Merry Christmas See more »

Filming Locations:

Romania See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,054,361

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$17,709,155
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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