Sunday, May 21, 2017

The Exception Movie Review

Lily James stars in The Exception

Beyond Good and Evil

Rotten Tomatoes Plot: A riveting World War II thriller that is filled with espionage and romance in equal measure, The Exception follows German soldier Stefan Brandt (Jai Courtney) as he goes on a mission to investigate exiled German Monarch Kaiser Wilhelm II (Christopher Plummer.) The Kaiser lives in a secluded mansion in The Netherlands, and as Germany is taking over Holland, the country's authorities are concerned that Dutch spies may be watching the Kaiser. As Brandt begins to infiltrate the Kaiser's life in search of clues, he finds himself drawn into an unexpected and passionate romance with Mieke (Lily James), one of the Kaiser's maids whom Brandt soon discovers is secretly Jewish. When Heinrich Himmler (Eddie Marsan), Head of the SS, decides to come for an unexpected visit with a large platoon of Nazis in tow, the stage is set for a breathtaking showdown, as secrets are revealed, allegiances are tested, and Brandt is forced to make the ultimate choice between honoring his country and following his heart. Directed by David Leveaux.


Leveaux's directorial debut is a stunning surprise... one of 2017's best films (so far.) The Exception features (at least) a half-dozen superb performances, including Courtney's best to date, two refreshingly important/juicy female turns (James & Janet McTeer) and the always stellar Plummer, who (at 87) proves he still has it. The story has action, romance and suspense; and even manages to show some German characters in a (relatively) positive light, amidst the atrocities of WWII. There's also no shortage of apologies (half-hearted as they may be) and players trying to make amends for previous wickedness. Don't dare miss it.

Grade: A-