Defiance
Defiance (2009)

Based on an extraordinary true story, "Defiance" is an epic tale of family, honor, vengeance and salvation in World War II. The year is 1941 and the Jews of Eastern Europe are being massacred by the thousands. Managing to escape… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: June 2, 2009
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
57%
Flixster
User Score
73%



Critic Score: 57% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Professionally made but artistically uninspired, Ed Zwick's story of Jews surviving WWII in the Belarus forest lacks the emotional punch of the actual history.

Ben Lyons
At the Movies

The way Zwick force-feeds his audience emotion becomes laborious.

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Peter Howell
Toronto Star

It's understandable and laudable that they desire not to sensationalize the Bielskis, and they've made a worthy film. But their understated approach makes the struggle seem less urgent than it must surely have been.

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Will Leitch
Deadspin

Zwick wants to tell timeless stories on a grand scale. I know that's not what people want anymore. I know it's not breathtaking. But it's not something many are doing now, and definitely not doing it this well.

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Ben Mankiewicz
At the Movies

I felt like these characters were prototypes and not people.

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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times

Ultimately, the film celebrates and memorializes the survival of something unthinkable, and a group of people for whom defiance meant, at heart, that they would push against the growing darkness and carry on.

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Kelly Vance
East Bay Express

Zwick does not deal in gratuitous grotesquery or far-fetched metaphor. "Operatic" and "surreal" are not in his vocabulary.

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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor

As a piece of historical redress, a great service has been done in bringing this narrative to the screen.

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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle

It's difficult, perhaps impossible, to make a gripping 137-minute epic about people standing around under the trees.

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Joshua Starnes
ComingSoon.net

For all its pomp and ruminating, Defiance isn't really interested in drama. It really just wants to entertain us. But it's not any better at that.

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More reviews for Defiance

Flixster Audience Score: 73% Flixster User Reviews
xGary Xx
Defiance is the true story of Jewish brothers Daniel Craig and Liev Schreiber who hid from the Nazis in the Belarussian forest and quickly found themselves with… More
Jens S.
If you were trying to find a way to bash this film you could say that it is about people running and hiding through the same kind of forest for two hours. That… More
Anthony Lawrie
With the exception of Asael Bielski, the memories of those living in the woods all those years are respected in this telling of their story. Asael Bielski went… More
Raymond Wieser
Despite a great and inspiring story, and wonderful actors and director, it's hard to think that Defiance wouldn't be great, but the reality is not… More
Albert Kim
I wanted to love this movie. The plot, the actors, the setting, all seemed to be the perfect setup for a gripping and dramatic film. Edward Zwick directed this… More
Julie B
Well acted and interesting. And the dirtier Daniel Craig gets, the bluer his eyes look. Just sayin'.

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