Flame & Citron

3 ratings (3 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating: Very Good
5 stars
4 stars
1
3 stars
2
2 stars
1 star
Share This!
  Ask friends for feedback

Flame & Citron: The "Real" Inglourious Basterds

Mar 3, 2010
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Bang For The Buck

Pros:Fascinating true story, styllized, captivating leads

Cons:Story goes a little too deep at times

The Bottom Line: Flame & Citron honors two of Denmark's finest heroes, killers of Nazis and collaborators during the WWII occupation. Styllistically pleasing and perfectly portrayed.


Flame & Citron (2008)
Danish Title: Flammen & Citronen
Directed by: Ole Christian Madsen
Starring: Thure Lindhardt, Mads Mikkelsen

It takes a premise vaguely similar to Quentin Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds” and stylizes it like Michael Mann’s “Public Enemies,” two of last year’s biggest disappointments for me. But whereas the previous two titles fell short, this new to DVD Danish World War II pulp thriller hardly misses a beat.

The title might sound like something you’d order from your bartender, but it refers to the codenames of our two antagonists. They were key members of the Danish Holger Danske resistance group whose feats earned them the reputation of real life Robin Hoods. Flame (Thure Lindhardt) is the young, charismatic, calm triggerman earning his nickname for his bright orange hair, although movie trivia buffs will notice that he’s always the first to pull out a cigarette lighter whenever the occasion requires. Citron (Mads Mikkelsen) is the getaway guy and one of the key logistical enablers within the movement, gaining his nickname from his job at the local Citroen factory. Together they eliminate Nazi conspirators and informants.

As such the movie plays out like a tense action drama. The assassinations are numerous and usually point blank, while the occasional near miss brings added intensity. But Madsen (director and co-screenwriter) dishes up his tale with a few extra layers of complexity, ambiguously challenging his subjects with questions of conscience and duplicity. Citron has a family he rarely sees, his work prevents it and we (as well as he) are never really sure as to how content he is with that arrangement. Flame becomes besotted by a blonde fatale, one who’s an aid to the resistance but whose loyalties may also be divided.

She’s not the only one whose agenda is a little clouded though. When policy changes to start knocking off the German leaders too (previously it had always been deemed too dangerous for fear of reprisal) the duo start to question the motives and orders of their superior. In a society where motivations are divided by national pride and personal security, it’s difficult to know who to trust. Should they blindly kill without question? Women and sympathizers make for the biggest challenge, as well as those opposers who dub them: “tools for people with less pure motives.”

With its elements of heroism, film noir and the anti-hero, “Flame & Citron’s” story is extremely well crafted. Madsen’s ambiguity though is part strength and part weakness here. We’ve seen the strength of movies that have painted villains as the heroes (almost every gangster movie out there) but when you take two figures of such great national pride and achievement and question their motives you don’t necessarily get the same effect. It’s a great intellectual discussion and while the fact that this dynamic duo caused such a headache for the Gestapo is greatly celebrated, the fact that they also mistakenly and myopically killed innocents leaves you feeling a little down.

Stylistically there’s much to admire. As I mentioned it looks like a mixture between the gangster movie and the film noir, accentuated not only by the ambiguity but also by the constant clattering of machine guns and screeching of getaway wheels. Its saturated color scheme is loyal to the period but it also serves to highlight the vibrant figures of Flame and Citron as larger than life, the former especially so given his bright hair color. The leads are excellent too, especially Mikkelsen who plays Citron as a perspiring wreck (he was known for his late night work resulting in a constantly tired and weathered look), kind of a mix between Barton Fink and Clark Kent.

When “Inglourious Basterds” was billed as a bunch of Nazi killers, I was disappointed that it didn’t necessarily play out as such. In that regard I found “Flame & Citron” to be greatly more satisfying. It really is the “Bonnie & Clyde” of World War II movies. The screenplay might have got a little muddled or sidetracked but it still remains loyal to its premise and ultimately honors these two heroes of the resistance. Its mixture of folklore, gangster, noir and war themes means it ought to find a wide audience.

Verdict: 4 Stars – Highly Recommended

An entry into captaind's Good Movies Guide


Recommend this product? Yes


Share this product review with your friends   
Share This!


Related Deals You Might Like...

Citron Of Santa Monica 100% Silk Bold Floral Print Teal Multi Tunic L

Citron Of Santa Monica 100% Silk Bold Floral Print Teal Multi Tunic L

NWT Citron of Santa Monica 100% Silk Bold Floral Print Teal Multi Tunic L Length: 26Across the chest: 22Important:All items are specially dyed to enha...
eBay

$89.95

FREE Shipping
Citron Clothing Black Red Green Floral Asian Fans Print Silk Blouse Top Size Xs

Citron Clothing Black Red Green Floral Asian Fans Print Silk Blouse Top Size Xs

Our eBay Store About Us Shipping Payments Returns Contact Us BRANDS | FASHION JEWELRY | WOMENS APPAREL | ACCESSORIES | MENS APPAREL | KIDS APPAREL | S...
eBay

$74.25

FREE Shipping
Heather White And Citron Knit Lace Trim Boatneck Tank

Heather White And Citron Knit Lace Trim Boatneck Tank

Heather white and citron knit lace trim boatneck tank. Lightweight knit front; woven back - available in White. Self: 100% Rayon; Trim: 100% Silk. Boa...
Bluefly

$41.40

+$7.95 shipping
Raglan Sleeve Top Citron/Navy S - 3Hearts

Raglan Sleeve Top Citron/Navy S - 3Hearts

Find shirts at Target.com! Raglan sleeve top citron/navy s - 3hearts
Target

$19.99

+$4.99 shipping
Citron Machine Washable Silk Straight Leg Pants Size

Citron Machine Washable Silk Straight Leg Pants Size

For Sale 100% Authentic NEW Citron Machine Washable Silk Straight Leg Pants Size PL Elastic Waist Details:Color: Green ( it has little brown in it)Siz...
eBay

$39.99

+$3.99 shipping
Plus Size Women's Citron Sheer Silk Shirt

Plus Size Women's Citron Sheer Silk Shirt

A medallion patchwork print brings a rich and exotic look to a floaty silk shirt accented with a solid Mandarin collar and placket. Color(s): black. B...
Nordstrom

$108.00

FREE Shipping
Men's Saucony Performance Compression Socks - Citron (Medium)

Men's Saucony Performance Compression Socks - Citron (Medium)

Graduating compression in Sauconys Performance Compression Crew Socks improve circulation in your feet to keep you trekking stronger for longer. Airme...
Cabela's

$24.99

+$5.95 shipping
Nolana Citron Sofa

Nolana Citron Sofa

With the warm casual feel of the comfortable boxed seat cushions and the plush loose back pillows all wrapped within a soft textured upholstery fabric...
Sears
57 Grand Style 5700 in Citron

57 Grand Style 5700 in Citron

Cocktail length strapless duchess satin pencil dress with princess seams and wide bow detail at matching belt. Available in sizes 00-30W and 00-30W wi...
Dessy Group

$210.00

FREE Shipping