Film Tackles Armenian Genocide
Starring Oscar Isaac, Charlotte Le Bon, Christian Bale, James Cromwell
In theaters beginning April 21
Run time: 133 minutes
The Promise is both a love story and a historical drama. Set during the final days of the Ottoman Empire and just prior to World War I, it focuses on the story of Armenian medical student Mikael (Oscar Isaac), Chris (Christian Bale), an American AP journalist based in Paris, and their mutual love interest, Ana (Charlotte Le Bon).
Fans of history, drama and romance will find this film engaging. It tells the story of the Armenian genocide, during which some 1.5 million Armenian Christians were exterminated by the Turkish government. It’s an important story, seldom seen on film — one that is still denied by the Turkish government. Thankfully, during these turbulent times in the Middle East, the film doesn’t shy away from difficult subject matter. It’s a very true story with a fictional romance at its center. The romantic triangle is sometimes distracting, but perhaps the only way to get a wider screening for a film about genocide.
The portrayal of Christian Armenians, the practice of their faith, and the priest are very respectful and welcome in a Hollywood film with such popular actors. Jean Reno and James Cromwell also play bit parts in the film as a French admiral and a U.S. Ambassador. This is a film well worth seeing.
TIM DRAKE is a Legatus magazine staff writer.