Geek Review: Notre-Dame On Fire | Geek Culture


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When Notre-Dame de Paris caught fire in 2019, Parisians wept. The iconic cathedral, rich in historical past and fame, has stood firm for over 800 years and believers from all round the world flocked to the historical site to wish, while vacationers noted it as a must-visit location when admiring and taking within the sights of Paris. 

And whereas it’s solely been a mere three years since the tragedy, French director Jean-Jacques Annaud has decided to make a film out of it. 

And, oh mon doux, it’s gripping. 

 Notre-Dame on Fire

The disaster film’s title, Notre-Dame on Fire, tells you all you want to learn about what the film is about, and seeing how the fire itself was extensively reported within the information internationally, Annaud’s film supplies a new lens into the well-known and documented tragedy. 

Based on real interviews and anecdotes given by firefighters and police officers on duty through the day Notre-Dame caught fire, Notre-Dame on Fire is a dramatic retelling of the incident in varied means. It’s a whodunit, it’s a detective tale and it’s additionally a catastrophe film. 

The movie begins by hinting how the hearth must’ve began –  a stray cigarette a development worker didn’t put out correctly – however since the cause of the fire was never really uncovered, revealed or pinpointed, Annaud offers different potentialities too. 

 Notre-Dame on Fire

From there, Notre-Dame on Fire zeroes in on the customarily haphazard but ultimately heroic response to the unfolding disaster. Paris visitors, sluggish response occasions, locked doorways and the wrestle to get firefighting equipment up medieval spiral staircases all ramp up the strain within the middle portion of the film. 

By the end of the film, you still won’t know what really began the fireplace,l however you’ll leave the theater with a larger appreciation for firefighters who typically danger their lives to save the day. Starring Élodie Navarre, Chloé Jouannet, Jesuthasan Antonythasan, Kevin Garnichat, Samuel Labarthe, Jeremie Laheurte, Maximilien Seweryn, Daniel Horn, Vassili Schneider, and Sebastien Lalanne, Notre-Dame on Fire has fairly a quantity of known French-Swiss actors in the area though in some weird retelling of events, these actors come off across as awkward or quite unprofessional in their performance, though that’s more probably to keep the realness of the movie. 

Annaud leans into the forged of characters of weary firefighters, panicked church wardens and emotionally stricken monks, to tell his story, while the Parisian public help in providing a vivid backdrop with their reactions to the hearth. The archival information footage in addition to personal movies caught by onlookers complement the story – oftentimes via the usage of cut up screens. The juxtaposition of real footage with the film by way of cut up screens does take away a number of the class in Annaud’s cinematography, but it additionally comes across as a necessity in grounding the film in information and proof, rather than fiction and over-dramatisation. 

 Notre-Dame on Fire

The Seven Years in Tibet and The Name of the Rose director has all the time had an affinity for faith and religions, so it should come to no shock that Notre-Dame on Fire is riddled with religious motifs, as a younger girl’s death-wish to light a candle in the cathedral as it falls aside; loud bells and melodic and repetitive vocalisations, along with the visualisation of Christ brought to display screen multiple occasions – both in dialogue or symbols, pepper the display screen.

That stated, there isn’t a lot dialogue within the movie. Much of the audio one gets is from the sound of flames crackling, parts of the cathedral crashing onto the ground and the heroes coughing as they attempt to not suffocate and be engulfed by the flames too. The dialogue we do get once in a while are of the authorities discussing their plans, most of which are raised voices and murmurs in French, and humorous one-liner remarks from onlookers to inject slightly bit of life and humour within the in any other case severe film. There can also be a comical exchange between an old woman and a firefighter, over a cat stuck in a tree because the cathedral lights up in flames within the background. 

But in any other case, Notre-Dame on Fire is a visual expertise because the film’s biggest energy lies in its capacity to seize the daunting rage of the hearth. Annaud combines muscular motion sequences with precise footage of the occasion to scorching impact, and when you need any more convincing, the director truly created real massive fires on set while filming. Everything appears and feels actual as a result of it is! There’s a sense of worry and panic that transmits through the display, adding to the expertise. 

 Notre-Dame on Fire

In some ways, Notre-Dame seems like a girl personified. She is in grave hazard and in need of assist because the firefighters, her knights in shining armour, come to her rescue. Notre-Dame on Fire is made for the large display screen experience, with its full results and gravitas something that can solely be felt when watched on the massive display screen, and but we can’t promise the same impact if one were to watch it on the small screen. 

Notre-Dame on Fire is much from your Hollywood catastrophe movies. It’s not The Impossible or Deepwater Horizon. It’s – and we’re conscious of how pretentious this sounds – art. It wasn’t made for entertainment purposes, like 127 Hours, where informal moviegoers will catch in any case as a outcome of it stars James Franco. It’s additionally not for fans of the disaster genre who stay for the joys and danger. The movie is unquestionably made for a niche crowd, probably the French and fans of indie, creative films and will not be of much curiosity to most people. 

Whilst the film might fizzle when it comes to wide appeal, there’s no denying that Notre-Dame on Fire will trigger a raging hearth for these it is supposed for. 

Notre-Dame on Fire opens in IMAX and theatres on 8 December.



The Notre-Dame fireplace will get a pulpy retelling by Jean-Jaques Annaud. An artistic movie, Notre-Dame on Fire might lack generally enchantment and is only worth catching on the big display.

  • Story – 6/10

  • Direction – 8/10

  • Characterisation – 5/10

  • Geek Satisfaction – 5/10

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