The Translators (Les Traducteurs) FFF Review

Movie Bunker Score:

The Translators

Release: 2019-12-20Genre: MysteryDuration: 105 minsBudget: $ 0

Nine translators, hired to translate the eagerly awaited final book of a bestselling trilogy, are confined in a luxurious bunker.

The Translators

Release: 2019-12-20Genre: MysteryDuration: 105 minsBudget: $ 0

Nine translators, hired to translate the eagerly awaited final book of a bestselling trilogy, are confined in a luxurious bunker.

An Intriguing Plot Unfolds

In the spirit of thrilling mysteries like “Knives Out” and “Murder on the Orient Express,” “The Translators” (Les Traducteurs) weaves a web of secrets, suspicions, and schemes. This literary thriller is set in the high-stakes world of publishing. The renowned author Oscar Brach has just completed the concluding part of his bestselling Dedalus trilogy, “The Man Who Did Not Want to Die.” Eager for the book’s lucrative release, his publisher, Eric Angstrom, assembles a team of nine translators.

These translators, including Olga Kurylenko, Eduardo Noriega, Sidse Babett Knudsen, Alex Lawther, Riccardo Scamarcio, Anna Maria Sturm, Frederic Chau, Maria Leite, and Manolis Mavromatakis, are brought to an underground bunker in a secluded French villa. Their mission: to spend the next two months translating the novel. However, to ensure its security, they are given only twenty pages a day, closely monitored by armed guards. Cut off from the outside world, with strict internet restrictions, the manuscript is seemingly safeguarded from theft or leaks.

A Twist in the Tale

The tension escalates when Angstrom receives an ominous message revealing that the first ten pages of the novel have been leaked online. The hacker behind the breach threatens to release the remaining pages unless a ransom is paid. Initially, the leak seems impossible, given the translators’ constant surveillance and lack of opportunities to smuggle the manuscript outside the bunker. But as we delve deeper into the translators’ motives and suspicious activities, doubts emerge. Could one of them be the hacker? How did they manage to leak the pages, and what is their motive?

Régis Roinsard, the director and co-writer of “The Translators,” impressively executes the intricate plot with remarkable finesse. The screenplay unfolds at a careful pace, revealing just enough information to pique our curiosity and draw us further into the mystery. Just when we believe we have glimpsed a crucial clue prematurely, the bigger picture reveals even more layers yet to be uncovered. Roinsard’s skillful direction shines in a gripping heist sequence crafted with precise scripting and seamless shots. Well-timed cuts and uninterrupted long takes build immersive momentum, intensifying the heart-pounding suspense. Cinematographer Guillaume Schiffman complements this with smooth, slick camera movements, enhancing the film’s luxurious production design. As tension and mistrust arise, the cinematography seamlessly transitions to handheld shots, adding an unstable atmosphere. Composer Jun Miyake’s score, featuring strings, piano, and jazzy flourishes, adds a classy and suspenseful touch.

A Multifaceted Ensemble Cast

“The Translators” boasts a diverse international cast, with standout performances from Lambert Wilson as the cold and calculating publisher, Eric Angstrom, Olga Kurylenko as the passionate Russian translator Katerina, and Alex Lawther as the quietly cunning English translator Alex. While these actors deliver memorable portrayals, some of the supporting characters lack the necessary depth and remain less memorable. The film could have benefited from more moments of teamwork, emphasizing the translators’ dynamic interactions. However, there is one clever scene where the translators attempt to communicate secretly, furtively switching between Spanish, Russian, and Mandarin. Unfortunately, the script underutilizes several characters and leaves them somewhat disconnected from the bigger narrative. Ultimately, their lack of closure may detract slightly from the film’s original premise. Nevertheless, given the narrative’s complexity in juggling multiple characters and plot twists, these flaws are forgivable. Ultimately, “The Translators” is a rewarding cinematic experience, delivering an abundance of thrills, twists, and surprises that keep us guessing until the climactic end.


In conclusion, “The Translators” intricately explores the world of literary publishing, enveloping the audience in a suspenseful and enigmatic web of mistrust, secrets, and unforeseen alliances. This twisty mystery thriller, directed by Régis Roinsard, combines superb performances, skillful direction, and engaging cinematography to create an immersive cinematic experience. By exploring into the motivations and activities of its characters, the film maintains a high level of intrigue and perplexity. While some supporting characters may lack development, the overall narrative remains compelling and keeps the viewers on the edge of their seats.


1. Is “The Translators” based on a true story?

No, “The Translators” is not based on a true story. It is a work of fiction that delves into the suspenseful world of literary translators.

2. What languages are featured in the film?

“The Translators” showcases a multilingual atmosphere, with characters conversing in various languages such as English, Spanish, Russian, and Mandarin.

3. Are there any surprising plot twists?

Yes, “The Translators” is known for its clever plot twists and surprises that keep viewers guessing. The unraveling of the mystery will leave you captivated until the very end.

4. Where was the film shot?

The film was shot in various locations, including an underground bunker in a remote French villa. These settings contribute to the isolation and intrigue of the story.

5. Can you recommend similar mystery thrillers?

If you enjoyed “The Translators,” you might also appreciate other gripping mystery thrillers such as “Knives Out,” “Murder on the Orient Express,” “Gone Girl,” and “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” These films share a similar sense of intrigue and suspense.