Following his acclaimed documentary I Am Not Your Negro, Raoul Peck’s timely, well-crafted period drama focuses on the early years of Karl Marx, in exile with his young wife when they meet Friedrich Engels, the son of a factory owner.
In Germany the intellectuals are in upheaval, in France the workers have taken to the streets and in England the revolution is industrial – inspiring philosophers Marx (August Diehl) and Engels (Stefan Konarske) to produce ‘The Communist Manifesto.’
Peck and his legendary screenwriter Pascal Bonitzer (Chantal Ackerman’s Golden Eighties, André Téchiné’s Scene of the Crime, Jacques Rivette’s La Belle Noiseuse) revel in the world of ideas and hopes for the future embodied in these two world-historical figures in a cerebral and intelligent period drama.
“It should be dull, but it isn't. Somehow the spectacle of fiercely angry people talking about ideas becomes absorbing and even gripping.” – PETER BRADSHAW, THE GUARDIAN