Joyeux Noël (Merry Christmas)

Fri 09 December 2022
Time 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Price £6

Director: Christian Carion (France, Germany, UK, Belgium, Romania, 2005)
Certification:  12  | 1h  56 min | Drama, History | Language: English, French, German, Latin with English subtitles

Merry Christmas (Joyeux Noël) tells the true-life story of the spontaneous Christmas Eve truce declared by Scottish, French and German troops in the trenches of World War I. Enemies leave their weapons behind for one night as they band together in brotherhood and forget about the brutalities of war. Diane Krüger (Troy), Daniel Brühl (Good Bye Lenin!) and Benno Fürmann (The Princess and the Warrior) head a first-rate international cast in a truly powerful, must-see film.

The film recreates a night of conciliation and it is a poignant reminder of the spirit’s survival and humanity. In 2006, the film was an Academy Award, Golden Globe and BAFTA nominee for Best Foreign Film, after winning the previous year awards in Leeds and Valladolid and being presented in Cannes out of competition. 

French writer-director, Christian Carion, whose parents were farmers in Northern France has mentioned in different interviews how he grew with a close presence of the war, as the fields of his childhood had many shells from the first World War that never exploded.  During his research he had access to military reports and archive material which provided inspiration for his characters. 

★★★ “A vivid, quietly powerful recreation of a truly extraordinary moment in history: just not an overwhelmingly moving one”  – Empire

You can read the film notes, written by Eliza Perry, here. Eliza is a Bristol based freelance film note writer and aspiring film journalist. She holds a BA (hons) and MA in Film and Television Studies from Warwick University, and is passionate about sharing her appreciation for film with others. To read the film notes on her blog, head over here.

With support of the BFI Film Audience Network, awarding funds from the National Lottery in order to bring this project to more audiences across the UK.

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