History · Movie Review

Ceasefire On The Christmas Eve

November 1918, it’s been a decisive month for the whole Europe. The continent was engulfed in war. The first world wide scale war the world had never seen before. World War I. Another name for this war just like my junior high school history teacher said was a European Civil War. I had a friend from AIESEC Paris who ever stayed at my home for a internship program. His name was Julian. He told me that during that war there was a French Soldier who killed a German Soldier. Afterward, when he moved closely to the victim he killed, it turns out that the German Soldier who had been killed by him was his cousin! But this madness not only happen in the front line. If we look at the leaders who were fighting in this war for example like King George V from England, Czar Nicholas II from Russia against Kaiser Wilhem II from Germany, three of them were also cousins!

There’s a nice quote from French Roman Catholic Archbishop François Fénelon. He said as follows:

All wars are civil wars, because all men are brothers.

But now, I’m not going to talk about the war. I’m going to write a review about the movie that in my opinion is the best World War I movie which depicting the World War I, “Joyeux Noël” or Merry Christmas in English. Actually, it’s an old movie. This movie was screen out during the Cannes Film Festival in France 2005, but because to commemorate the 93th year of the ending of World War I, I think this movie is worth to watch!

This movie is about the three nations who were fighting each other during the World War I which are Scottish, French, and German. They were only hundred meters away from each other, but during the Christmas Eve, they decided to hold a truce.  This film is based on the true stories of the World War I Christmas truce along the Western Front.

It’s a touchy movie. It also touches our consciences as a human who has a compassion to others but at the same time we have a desire to eliminate other. Who’s going to win in this movie? Is it German or allies? or perhaps the winner is the cruelty or the compassion? Just take a look by yourself :)

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