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Movie Review: Sophie Scholl: The Final Days

Alternate Title: Acts of Conscience

Story: What would you be willing to do for a idea? Would you risk your life for a principle? This fine, though at times tedious film, by German film maker Marc Rothemund from a screenplay by Fred Breinersdorfer depicts in a quasi-documentary style format six days in February of 1943. The White Rose Society was an underground resistance movement inside Germany during the latter days of WW11.. The society's peaceful acts of conscience demonstrated itself through leaflets and wall slogans.

Three youths are arrested for distributing leaflets and undergo several days of interrogation by the SS, a kangaroo trial and ultimately execution.The film is mostly about the young Sophie Scholl who is a national hero in Germany. Director Rothemmund wanted to reintroduce this historic figure to a new generation of Germans.

The story is not melodramatic or emotional which gives it its power. If you want to see one of this year's five Oscar foreign language nominated films check out Sophie Scholl. It has already won three Lolas and two Silver Bears in Berlin.

For more information and photo about The White Rose Society go to: http://www.jlrweb.com/whiterose/ and http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/rose.html

Acting: Julia Jentsch as Sophie is terrific. She was believable, idealistic and powerful. The rest of the cast is fine with great performances up and down the ladder.

Predilection: I try to see all of the Oscar nominated films.

Soundtrack: I did not notice any soundtrack but I am sure there was music.

Opening Titles: Credits at the end. If you do see this film stay for the credits as you can see photos of the real characters.

Theater Audience: A packed house of other cinephiles who need to see all of the nominated films.

Squirm Scale: Nazis make me squirm.

Drift Factor: I found myself looking at my watch too often.

Predictability Level: High

Tissue Usage: I did shed a few tears at the end.

Oscar Worthy: Apparently so since it is nominated.

Soap Box: It was impossible to sit and watch this film without thinking of today's political climate. Questions about morality, conscience and politics were easy to juxtapose to today's headlines. Is our society coming to the point where our civil liberties are breached and could this type of thing happen here? Prisoners are detained and have no right to counsel or charges filed as I write. Scary stuff, eh?

Nit Picking: It was ponderously slow at times.

Big Screen or Rental: Chances of you finding this on the big screen are slim.

Length: Two hours.