Updated: Apr 9
What we can create on a cinema screen in this day and age is truly remarkable, and witnessing Sam Mendes's new World War One movie at the Imax felt like stepping back in time. The obscure camera angles, impeccable edits, vivid colours, and quick movements meant not only did you witness the trenches, but you also experienced them.
War films have adapted dramatically over the last 15 years. The acting of these dedicated soldiers has always been a phenomenon, from Saving Private Ryan to Dunkirk, however, something about the sheer perfection and intensity of the director's eyes for this film made this a stand out feature. Knowing the stories came from soldiers and commanders from the war tore at my heartstrings at the end of the movie. The challenges this crew must have gone through, lugging the equipment through these narrow trenches, across gushing rivers, and burning flames was well worth us feeling the incredible bravery of these young men. One of my favourite parts was when the boys broke off to their teenage charms, discussing their comical silly tales of friends. Knowing that these inner circles and tales was all they had out there, each other, came across brilliantly in the speeches of the script.
George Mackey's performance is a real treat and I thought he fitted the character amazingly. However, I struggled to connect with Dean-Charles Chapman. I don't believe this is reflective of his acting, but his character and the way he was written and portrayed. I feel his persona needed more charism and drive, more of a leader wanting to find his older brother.
It's a modern-day wonder to witness films of this genre with the technology we have. The walking scenes alone gave shivers down your spine. The detailed costumes, the number of extras, the long-spanning camera shots, it all added to a truly impeccable piece of cinema.