Hearts of War (DVD Review)18 Apr, 2009 By: Erika Carmona
Rated ‘R’ for some violence and sexual content.
Stars Jonathan Scarfe, Nina Dobrev, Roy Scheider, Daryl Hannah.
Hearts of War begins in the winter of 1939 at the dawn of World War II during the Nazi invasion of Poland.
Rachel (Nina Dobrev), the daughter of a rabbi, has been rescued by Oscar (Jonathan Scarfe), a young German soldier, after a horrible snowstorm. Though she is engaged, they quickly fall in love, forgetting the war around them.
Although Oscar is a soldier, he has been forced to join the war by his father, General Koenig (Kim Coates), who believes their duty is like a calling from God.
Oscar prefers the art of poetry over battle. He writes, “they call it war to justify it, but its true name is madness.”
Above his ideals, he feels committed to his intelligence unit and decides to sacrifice his happiness and watch his love walk away.
After they are separated, the Nazis storm the town and begin killing innocent women and children. Rachel flees with her fiancé, leaving Oscar with nothing but a memory of his beloved.
This film truly captures the heartbreaking story of the Nazi invasion, displaying on more than one occasion the inhumane treatment of Jews.
However, the love triangle story is somewhat reminiscent of Pearl Harbor, and the plot can be a bit confusing when the movie shifts from one period to the next.
Unpredictable, tear-jerking sequences will have viewers surprised about how a tragic story can be so beautiful.
The film also is notable as one of the last performances by the late Roy Scheider, who plays the rabbi.