Robert Zemeckis’ Allied tells the tale of two spies during the second world war. The film takes place in the 1940s, primarily in Casablanca (in Morocco) and London, and follows Max Vatan (Brad Pitt) and Marianne Beausejour (Marion Cotillard).
The film begins as Max, a Canadian, parachutes into a desolate desert – a quiet contrast to the chaotic scenes that follow.
Max heads into a party in Casablanca, where he’s kissed passionately his wife Marianne. Here’s the twist – the lovely French woman isn’t his wife, and they’ve never met before. It’s all a cover for their mission.
But then they fall in love for real; the second half of the film takes place in London a year after their mission is complete. Max’s life is thrown into disarray when he’s told that the real Marianne is dead, and the woman he loves and has a child with is a German spy.
Hats off to Pitt: he gives a great portrayal of a man torn between duty and love, plus he keeps up with native French speaker Marion Cotillard as they converse in French.
Zemeckis has paid very close attention to little details to make the film as accurate to the time period as possible – from the clothes to the general look and feel of the 1940s. The plot is tight and so full of action that at no point do you feel bored lose focus – and that’s no mean feat, when the film is two hours long.
Edited by Ginny Wong