Dunkirk (2017)

PG-13   |    |  Action, Drama, History


Dunkirk (2017) Poster

Allied soldiers from Belgium, the British Empire, and France are surrounded by the German Army, and evacuated during a fierce battle in World War II.

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7.9/10
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  • Harry Styles in Dunkirk (2017)
  • Alex Gibson and Richard King at an event for Dunkirk (2017)
  • Cillian Murphy in Dunkirk (2017)
  • Cillian Murphy and Tom Glynn-Carney in Dunkirk (2017)
  • Harry Styles in Dunkirk (2017)
  • Harry Styles in Dunkirk (2017)

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User Reviews


17 July 2017 | somf
10
| Micro as opposed to macro version of the battle
Saw an early screening tonight in Denver.

I don't know where to begin. So I will start at the weakest link. The acting. Still great, but any passable actor could have been given any of the major roles and done a great job. I know almost no more about the battle of Dunkirk after seeing the film than I did before, and I am not exactly a WWII historian. Truth be told, I learned all I know about the battle of Dunkirk from the movie poster. Does that weaken the film? Hell no, this is a film about survival. The opening scene tells it all and sets the stage as we get our first glimpse into a young soldier's need to stay alive, and his creative attempts to do so. That actor may even be considered the main character of the film. More words have been written so far in this review than he speaks. And I have no clue who the actor in that role is. It is humorous that Tom Hardy looks like Bane through most the film in the role of a pilot wearing an oxygen mask throughout. Kenneth Branagh is the only officer with any lines in the film, so that should give you an idea of the POV that we experience. We are the enlisted man trying to find a way to stay alive in a chaotic and harrowing battle. Though I believe Dunkirk will win every single technical Oscar, I would be surprised if it has any acting nominations at all.

How does Nolan elevate this above other films of a similar nature? I think he says it best himself, when he describes Dunkirk as a thriller more than a war film. He pulls that off superbly.

When a ship starts to take in water as numerous bullets penetrate its hull, I wanted to jump out of my seat and cover up the holes myself.

The film has three separate stories that are titled Mole, Sea and Air. And we all know where Moles live. The way the narratives of the three stories unfold and how they are all tied together is what makes the film a masterpiece. Much has been said about Nolan using IMAX film cameras and how the film is enriched by this. I don't know. I doubt I saw actual film being projected at my screening. Every frame looked terrific though.

So what is the most superlative aspect of the film? Gotta be the soundtrack. Hans Zimmer will win the Oscar for this without a doubt. So , so brilliant. This is not a soundtrack that I would buy at the store and play on my stereo. This is a soundtrack that weaves throughout the three narratives seamlessly and creates this phenomenal sense of tension. There are times when a two or three minute tense orchestral passage plays continuously as the story shifts from the ground to the sea then to the air and the music draws the three stories together. Zimmer's soundtrack reminds me of the way that Bernard Hermann's work was so vitally important in building suspense in most Hitchcock films. Though that description almost sells Zimmer short. His soundtrack is that good.

I don't think this is a film that will retain even half of its strength in your home theater. No folks, this is a film that you cough up for an overpriced IMAX ticket and rationalize it by knowing that experiencing Dunkirk in any other fashion will just not cut it.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

In regards to the Battle of Dunkirk's importance, Christopher Nolan stated, "This is an essential moment in the history of World War II. If this evacuation had not been a success, Great Britain would have been obliged to capitulate, and the whole world would have been lost, or would have known a different fate. The Germans would undoubtedly have conquered Europe, the U.S. would not have returned to war. It is a true point of rupture in war and in history of the world. A decisive moment. And the success of the evacuation allowed (Sir Winston Churchill) to impose the idea of a moral victory, which allowed him to galvanize his troops like civilians and to impose a spirit of resistance while the logic of this sequence should have been that of surrender. Militarily, it is a defeat. On the human plane, it is a colossal victory."


Quotes

Tommy: English! I'm English! Anglais!


Goofs

Even though the canopy should have been open for the ditching, all Spitfires have a crowbar stowed in the cockpit door (readily available to the pilot) for such emergencies.


Crazy Credits

"The following Dunkirk little ships recreated their courageous and historic journey for this film: Caronia, Elvin, Endeavour, Hilfranor, Mary Jane, Mimosa, MTB 102, New Britannic, Nyula, Papillon, Princess Elizabeth, RIIS I"


Alternate Versions

In Spain, the film was projected on 2.35:1 screens in the 2.20:1 aspect ratio. But the film was finally projected with black bars on the four sides of the screen. This same situation happened with Jurassic World (2015) and just before the film started a text appeared on the screen explaining the 2.00:1 aspect ratio fitting on the 2.35:1 screen adding black bars up an down. Dunkirk (2017) didn't show any explanation before the film.


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Written by
Hans Zimmer

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Action | Drama | History | Thriller | War

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