Valkyrie – A Decent War Movie Or Not?

Valkyrie is the tale of Claus von Stauffenberg’s assassination attempt on Hitler. It’s been said that there were over 15 assassination attempts on Hitler’s life throughout his career. Von Stauffenberg’s attempt was perhaps one of the most famous attempts to end the war by taking Hitler’s life.

A lot of people were apprehensive about having Tom Cruise play the role of von Stauffenberg. Stauffenberg’s attempt to assassinate Hitler was considered by many to be one of the few honourable deeds the Germans performed during World War II and many were worried this would be sullied by Tom Cruise’s performance.

Fortunately that wasn’t the case. Cruise played the role magnificently. His character was subtle, modest and respectful. He was also driven and sharp and willing to do what it took to achieve his objectives.

The story cleverly interweaves the facts with an amazingly suspenseful storyline. The movie sticks closely enough to the facts to create and enhance a sense of realism, but doesn’t hesitate to add some spice when it deems necessary.

The story’s tension keeps on mounting throughout the movie as men take risk after risk to accomplish the mission. The operation, known as Operation Valkyrie, involves trying to get the reserve army to attack Hitler’s SS troops. The assassination attempt was to be carried out with a bomb.

As the movie unfolds, the possibility of a traitor in their midst emerges. The storyline takes a twist as more and more about the characters unfold and their many motivations come into question. It turns out Clause von Stauffenberg may not be the highly moral character that he’s originally portrayed to be.

Most movies are a slow build-up towards the ending, which is a mystery. With this film, however, everyone already knows how it will end since we know that World War II didn’t end until the Allies invaded.

Knowing the ending actually just adds to the suspense and in fact adds a sense of apprehension and horror as the movie progresses. As things start to slowly go wrong, the sense of knowing how the plot will end just adds to the ‘edge of your seat’ aspect of the film.

Overall this movie was truly artistically done. It has everything you could want from a spy movie or from an action movie, but interweaved with an amazing real life story that will capture almost any audience. On the whole I would say that this movie easily warrants a rating of 5 stars out of 5.