The intervention: Shooting

The number of feature films produced in France each year, and therefore many great qualities never find their way into our rooms, we may be surprised that “The intervention” takes the poster. This caricature and simplistic action film owes its presence here, one imagines, only to the fact that its director Fred Grivois grew up in Quebec.
The premise, however, was promising. Grivois ( The resistance of the air ) was inspired by a fact lived, that told him one of the protagonists.

In 1976, in Djibouti, the last French colony, a school bus of 21 children aged six to twelve was taken hostage by a commando. The four separatist militants are bogged down with the vehicle in a no-man’s land on the Somali border, which prevents armed intervention.

Paris will deploy a heterogeneous specialized unit led by André Gerval (Alban Lenoir). Then starts a game of cat and mouse while the snipers wait for orders that do not come.

It’s hot, the tension is rising … Even more when Professor Jane Andersen (Olga Kurylenko) decides to join her panicked protégés on the bus. To the chagrin of Gerval and his team. “We are here to save men, not to play heroes,” he reminds them.

Exasperated as Somalis unite with the terrorists on the bus and others are massed at the border, they will embark on a reckless rescue operation by disobeying their superiors …

Here, the feature film takes great liberties with Loyada’s hostage-taking, whose record was not so glorious.

No suspense about the outcome of the story – it’s called Intervention After All. Grivois nevertheless manages to maintain a good tension, especially by multiplying the point of view of the shooters.

The action taking place in the mid-70s, the director wanted to recreate the aesthetics of the time (separate screens, framing …) and borrowing atmospheres Westerns blood and sweat. The guys from the intervention team are also portrayed as cowboys – the characters are very typical.

This tribute however unintentionally pours into pastiche, before switching completely into gratuitous violence and bad atmosphere in the final. The game of massacre with strong hemoglobin and music to match is a soliciting of bad taste.

The dialogues are poor, sometimes even ridiculous and macho (without second degree). The actors are rather left to themselves. In such circumstances, the cream goes back up. Alban Lenoir is almost credible, but the real performance to highlight is that of Olga Kurylenko.

The former James Bond Girl, whom we saw in Daniel Roby’s French film In the Mist (2018), is quite credible in the role of this teacher who is not cold-blooded and who place the well-being of children above all.

It does not save the intervention.

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