Our review of Valiant Hearts: Childhood Warfare

CRITICISM – Young Jews are hiding in Chambord and in the surrounding forest. A nice film between historical narrative and fable.

Between historical narrative and fable, Mona Achache’s latest feature film addresses the fate of Jewish children hidden under the Occupation. During the summer of 1942, a group of young Parisians arrived at the Château de Chambord. The place has become a conservation center for national collections, including The Mona Lisa, and the children took advantage of a transport of crates of works to leave the capital in complete discretion. Then begin days devoted to waiting for a smuggler who must take them to the free zone.

The film is based, in its first part, on bits of truth. In addition to the reconstruction of the castle in its function as a warehouse, the adult characters are inspired by figures of the Resistance, including Rose Valland (Camille Cottin), curator at the Jeu de Paume museum, or Pierre Schommer, responsible for the deposit of works from Chambord. The latter are also sometimes struggling in this role of child rescuers that they did not have – in reality, no Jew was hidden…

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