Dunkirk (2017)

Dunkirk Movie Review

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Dunkirk Movie Review

Dunkirk is a 2017 war film directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Tom Hardy and Mark Rylance among others. It is a hugely overrated movie.

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Men my age dictate this war.

Why should we be allowed to send our children to fight it?

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Dunkirk Movie Review

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I am all for original WWII films as we desperately need those having in mind that they are so abundant to the point of exhaustion. However, I like good originality and Dunkirk is a perfect case of negative originality. It is original for the sake of being original and its new concept is so bad that even the more straightforward approach would have been better in this instance.

So basically Nolan went out and made an entirely action-oriented war film and that’s it. All you get in Dunkirk is action scene after action scene and even for a relatively short film, it got very boring pretty quickly. It lacks substance and a strong anti-war statement.

It is original in a way that it throws you in a war and portrays war realistically. But in that way it became more of a video game or documentary than a feature film. This is no live-action film in my opinion. It has no story whatsoever, it has no characterization at all and almost no emotional connection. But it also fails as a documentary because it isn’t factual enough and I learned almost nothing about this event and that means that the film is a failure as a history lesson.

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Dunkirk Movie Review

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So Dunkirk is “edgy” for portraying non-heroic people in war and these people will sacrifice their fellow soldiers just so they can survive themselves. And I honestly have a huge problem with that. I do think that some soldiers were like that, but not all soldiers and certainly not in the patriotic 1940s. The film is overly modern and just not truthful in its portrayal of soldiers.

The character development truly is awful which is a shame as they’ve got some talented actors here but none of them got anything to do. Harry Styles did an okay job for a singer, Marc Rylance gave probably the film’s best performance, Kenneth Branagh is also solid… However, they play nameless, bland, unknown non-entities and not real characters or people so all of them are entirely wasted, especially Tom Hardy who once again got to wear a mask on his face which is getting ridiculous by now.

I am trashing Dunkirk for lacking in those more important aspects such as story and characters. However, I am now going to praise it for its technical aspects and really those are the only reason to even see this mess. So the acting is solid and the direction is good. The dialogue is almost non-existent and it almost plays like a silent film, but the sound effects are truly excellent and the film is realistic in its portrayal of combat from air, land and sea. Its non-linear structure did not work and sometimes it was hard to follow and some scenes were more boring than others, but it was still interesting to see battling on all three sides.

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Dunkirk Movie Review

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The cinematography is truly exceptional and the film is so beautifully shot that I adored watching some of its imagery, especially the air scenes. I loved the wide shots of sea and aerial fights and I do realize that this must have been awesome to witness on the big screen. And its biggest selling point is the score which is magnificent – so palpably and fittingly intense and accompanying the action on screen superbly.

Dunkirk is not a movie. It may be called a documentary but this is not a live-action film as it has no story whatsoever and the characterization is horrible. It lacks anti-war statements too and it doesn’t connect emotionally at all. It also fails as a documentary because it isn’t factual enough and I learned almost nothing about this event so the film ended up being entirely pointless. It is realistic in its portrayal of war, but certainly not in its portrayal of soldiers. The technical aspects are truly great with simply stunning cinematography with fantastic wide shots and absolutely magnificent score which is fittingly very intense. But technical aspects do not make a movie great and certainly Dunkirk is not great. It is original but in a very bad manner and it truly is one of the most overrated films of the year from one of the most overrated directors today.

My Rating – 3

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Posted in 2010s, 2017, FILM DECADES, MOVIE REVIEWS, War and tagged , , , , , , .

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