Before the Fall (Napola)
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 68%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Nearly every point made in Before the Fall, be it about militarism or the secret sexual codes of fascism, is made too obviously, or has been made before, in films from Cabaret to Europa, Europa."
‑ Terry Lawson, Detroit Free Press
"One senses that Gansel took the most egregious stories from his research and stuffed them all into the shapeless script."
‑ Tom Keogh, Seattle Times
"Gansel is to be commended for finding a way to tell a beautiful story simultaneous with indicting his countrymen for their ugliness."
‑ Eric D. Snider,
"... the coming-of-age military drama is... the same old drill driven by brutal master race fervor."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
"Unfortunately, the more 'realistic' the film seems, the less pleasant it is to watch."
‑ Eric Monder, Film Journal International
"It asks us to sympathize with teenage boys being groomed for National Socialist glory, and for that reason alone, it absorbs."
‑ Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle
"The film is a competent but callow work dealing with a monstrous subject that automatically rejects callowness."
‑ Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
"The plotting is too obvious, too contrived and too convenient."
‑ Jeff Vice, Deseret News, Salt Lake City
"Gansel and his screenwriting partner, Maggie Gansel, bring not a whiff of fresh nor penetrating insight to these subjects."
‑ Bob Strauss, Los Angeles Daily News
"Bankrupt fascist politics and a talent in the ring combine to force decisions no teenager should have to make."
‑ Ron Wilkinson, Monsters and Critics
"... hooks you by focusing on Friedrich's very human story."
‑ Ruthe Stein, San Francisco Chronicle
"Quite a nice study of the Germany military schools where young men were most sheltered from the atrocities of World War II. The central character knows what's happening but instead focuses on a better future than his father had. But, still decisions mus"
‑ Paul Chambers, CNNRadio
"Friedrich isn't particularly sharp, but Riemelt's wonderfully nuanced performance gives him intricate layers of feeling."
‑ Arthur Salm, San Diego Union-Tribune
"While the background of the story is fascinating and enlightening, the foreground story could be more complex and original. The plot is a good story whose arc is a little overly familiar. Still the production values are high and the story is compelling."
‑ Mark R. Leeper,
More reviews for Before the Fall (Napola) on Rotten Tomatoes