Munich (2005) starring Eric Bana, Daniel Craig, Ciaran Hinds, Mathieu Kassovitz, Hanns Zischler, Geoffrey Rush directed by Steven Spielberg Movie Review

Munich (2005)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Eric Bana in Munich (2005)

Less Would Have Been More

Following the assassination of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics, Prime Minister Golda Meir agrees to a top secret operation to track down and execute those involved in the athlete's murder. Former member of Mossad Avner (Eric Bana) is put in charge of the operation with a small team of 4 other men all with special talents and one by one they take down each of those involved in the killings. But not only does it cause Avner to start to question on what he is doing but it leads them into danger as they have to start looking over their own shoulders as they are hunted down by those in the KGB and CIA.

I was born in the October of 1972 and as such I knew nothing of what happened at the Munich Olympics that year, in fact because of the poor history curriculum of British schools during the 80s I only became aware of what happened at the Munich Olympics sometime during the mid 90s, some time after I had left school. The good news is that you don't need to know the ins and outs of what happened at the Munich Olympics to follow "Munich" but you do need to have a liking for the old style thrillers of say Le Carre as that is what this is like.

Now in truth "Munich" despite its 164 minute length is quite simple to follow as firstly following the aftermath of Munich we see a small group of men go on the top secret operation to kill the terrorists. Along the way we see how what they do affects them, we also see that violence to solve violence doesn't work and well if I am to be brutally honest that it is. Of course this is all dressed up over a series of scenes with that classic espionage feel of secret meetings, calls from phone boxes and so on, but for all the comings and goings which include a government agency maybe being involved in the original act of terrorism, it is quite simple to follow.

For the most "Munich" is good, that old espionage movie style certainly makes it interesting especially when you keep in mind this is a movie inspired by a true story rather than a retelling of one. But for me it is a case of less would have been more and at 164 minutes "Munich" feels drawn out with scenes thrown in with a purpose of making a statement but standing out too much when they do as out of nowhere two people suddenly discuss something moralistic.

What this all boils down to is that "Munich" is an entertaining movie especially if you enjoy old espionage style thrillers but at the same time it feels needlessly drawn out.