Film Review: “Farewell, Mr. Haffmann”

Film Review: “Farewell, Mr. Haffmann”

By Rachel Galvin

Mr. Haffmann (Daniel Auteuil) is a well-respected Jewish jeweler, married with children. Being in Paris under Nazi occupation, he read the writing on the wall and decided to get his family out of town as soon as possible. He asked them to go to safety and he would follow after deciding what to do with his jewelry shop. In the first twist of fate, he asks his employee (Gilles Lellouche)  for help, a move that would change the employee’s life as he took over the store “temporarily,” moving above the store with his reluctant wife (Sara Giraudeau).

The problem begins when Mr. Haffmann finds his escape would not be so simple and he has to come back to the store and be sequestered in the basement while awaiting a chance to leave, hiding from the Nazis, who pay special interest in the newly popular store. 

As time goes by, the employee’s change of fortune also changes his personality from a meek dedicated employee to aggressive and greedy, asking everyone around him to make difficult choices, leading to betrayals and multiple surprises.

With skilled acting, the story is told with finesse. It is in French with English subtitles. The darkness of the tale and intricacy of everything from the jewelry to the complicated situation they find themselves in is told through lighting and cinematography.

This masterfully crafted award-winning motion picture from Menemsha Films opens December 22 at Movies of Delray, at 7421 W. Atlantic Ave., and Movies of Lake Worth at 7380 Lake Worth Road.

For more information, visit and look under the film’s title.

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