Based on the amazing true story of two Czechoslovakian agents Josef Gabik, Cillian Murphy (The Dark Knight, TV’s Peaky Blinders), and Jan Kubis, Jamie Dornan (Fifty Shades Of Grey, TV’s The Fall). They trained in the United Kingdom and parachuted back into occupied Czechoslovakia under code name Operation Anthropoid in a plot to assassinate The Reich’s third in command, SS officer Reinhard Heydrich.
Co-starring are Harry Lloyd (The Theory Of Everything, The Iron Lady), Toby Jones (Tale Of Tales, TV’s Sherlock) and Charlotte Le Bon (Yves Saint Laurent, The Hundred Foot Journey) whom all play remarkable and believable roles.
Comparable to Defiance starring Daniel Craig, realism and darkness are apparent from the start. People survive and fight against all odds, wishing for peaceful times yet have a heavy duty inflicted upon them. Unsure of whom they can trust, this is a gritty insight into how the Czechoslovakians could fight back and make a statement whilst under occupation.
Sinister from the outset, there are some gruesome and shocking scenes early on showing how fragile life really is, however, they are neither unnecessary nor over the top, leaving some open to the imagination.
Believable characters are established very quickly with Jamie Dornan and Cillian Murphy doing outstanding jobs playing well trained professional killers. Cold and calculated, always focusing on the objective and not allowing anything to get in the way, yet with humanity and virtue on their side. A single tear shed at a particular point in the film shows how emotions have been buried to achieve the required state of mind.
Suspense is always at the forefront with the two agents unsure of whom they can truly trust. A metaphor for this is the book Julius Caesar appearing twice during the film.
Romance plays a part in the film as propaganda of the mind. Love, and a path forward in life with a future, motivates to continue with the mission. The bravery and courageousness of the two agents is unfathomable as they realise there is little or no way out, yet continue their mission for their country.
Chilling piano music plays a significant role in adding atmosphere and drawing on a viewers’ emotions. Anthropoid leaves you questioning humanity and appreciating what the Czechoslovakian people experienced during this period in history.