A Midnight Clear
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Based on a novel by William Wharton, A Midnight Clear is set in the Adriennes Forest in December of 1944. A group of American GIs, all of whom have been together a bit too long, cling to the vestiges of their peacetime interests to remain sane. None are brilliant soldiers, though Will Knot Ethan Hawke is the one who exhibits the strongest leadership qualities. Billeted at a chateau, the soldiers begin hearing strange noises emanating from a graveyard, the handiwork of a group of mischievous German soldiers. The two enemy camps draw closer to one another as Christmas approaches, due in great… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 86%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A Midnight Clear doesn't do as much as it might with its characters. But as a parable of human folly and fragile hope, it has considerable impact."
‑ Michael Upchurch, Seattle Times
"A Midnight Clear -- not quite a great war movie but certainly a sensitive, bright and supremely moral one -- shows how courage itself can be a kind of insanity."
‑ Michael Wilmington, Los Angeles Times
"A powerful tragedy full of surprises and visual style."
‑ Alan Jones, Radio Times
""In combat, confusion is normal," an Army manual helpfully pointed out in World War II. That same confusion seems to have infected A Midnight Clear."
‑ Stephen Hunter, Baltimore Sun
"The pristine, snowbound setting gives the film a still, other-worldly quality, and makes for some arresting images, particularly that of a German and an American corpse frozen in a posthumous embrace."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"[Gordon] clearly relishes the story's many ironies, and he's often successful at sharing his enjoyment of them with us."
‑ Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel
"Despite such peculiarities, or perhaps because of them, A Midnight Clear has a quirky, haunting quality, delivering good performances all around, but especially from Sinise, Hawke and Frank Whaley."
‑ Johanna Steinmetz, Chicago Tribune
"Keith Gordon's adap of William Wharton's novel is low on action, long on mood and psychological complexity."
‑ Philip Kemp, Total Film
"It acknowledges war as a fact, but embraces pacifism."
‑ Rob Gonsalves, eFilmCritic.com
"An all-star cast makes it wholly worthwhile."
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
"It's so determined to be haunting that it gives up the ghost."
‑ Michael Sragow, New Yorker
"This fable about the futility of the war benefits not only from fine performances but an intelligent and literate offscreen narration that enhances the movie's conceptual integrity."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"Much of it has a seriousness and intelligence that are all too rare on today's movie scene."
‑ David Sterritt, Christian Science Monitor
"This skilful adaptation of William Wharton's novel creates close relationships between each character. Strong performances and precise direction help maintain them to the surprise ending."
‑ , Film4
"One of the most underrated films of the '90s"
‑ Jon Niccum, Lawrence Journal-World
More reviews for A Midnight Clear on Rotten Tomatoes