Megan Harlan
August 02, 1996 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Statement

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
120 minutes
Limited Release Date
12/12/03
performer
Michael Caine, Tilda Swinton, Alan Bates, Jeremy Northam, Charlotte Rampling
director
Norman Jewison
distributor
Sony Pictures Classics
author
Ronald Harwood
genre
Drama, Historical, Mystery and Thriller

We gave it an A-

Brian Moore once again masters the thriller genre. The Statement, his 18th novel, introduces Pierre Brossard, an elderly Frenchman living in small-town Provence. After an assassin tries to murder him, Brossard is exposed as a cunning war criminal who has eluded a death sentence for killing Jews in World War II. Granted sanctuary by the Catholic church, he has spent years hidden in an underworld of abbeys — but with mysterious enemies on his trail, alliances are tested. The cast of characters — cardinals, priests, police, activists, and French officials — plays an intricate chess game, with no one ever quite whom he seems to be. Their maneuvers ultimately reveal a massive conspiracy, but Moore keeps the reader guessing its true nature until the end. A-

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