Thursday, December 25, 2014

"Joyeux Noel"

Tonight we watched this 2005 French film.  Not only is it a great film, but it was also the perfect evening to watch it for the first time.  It provided a healthy dose of classic Christmas music that had been missing from this season here to date, as well as being a story that echoed the meaning one could think was originally intended for Christmas.

In short, it was a fictionalized account of a true story from 100 years ago, and that is the 1914 Christmas truce that occurred on various parts of the trench lines in WWI.   In an unplanned and slowly spontaneous way, French, Scottish, and German soldiers laid down their arms and met between the trenches for talk, handshakes, good drink, and even a mass by a Scottish priest in the Latin that all Catholics on both sides knew and could repeat.

The music was a highlight, as a German soprano with a major Berlin opera company and her lover,who was a tenor with the same ensemble before being drafted into the army, found themselves at the front under unpredictable circumstances and the Scottish bagpipers were armed not only with their guns but also with their pipes which they brought out on Christmas Eve.

It was a pleasant end to our Christmas Day, 2014.


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