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Review from a combat veteran.
dr-peter-coldwell13 December 2019
Last night COL Ferry and I (COL Coldwell, both USA) were able to watch the new WWI film, 1917, before it has national release. It is a cinematographic feast for the eyes, long expansive shots that follow the protagonists as they execute their mission. It does not hide the horrors that existed in trench warfare, it shows them for their brutality and abundance. (My great uncle died as a consequence of his service fighting in the trenches, mustard gas poisoning). In many ways it reminded me of Saving Private Ryan.

For those who have served in combat (I have deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan), I cannot tell you if the film will be too difficult to watch, it might well be, especially if incoming artillery is a trigger. For me, as the camera travels a few inches above the dirt advancing slowly up a berm, my response was visceral. I was taken back to the patrols we walked in Afghanistan, not knowing what was around the corner; not relaxing heightened vigilance, not knowing if there would be an IED, a child wearing a suicide vest, a sniper taking aim. For the protagonists in this film (as for all who served and are serving) surviving the climb up the berm, there is no sigh of relief, no respite from the fear of uncertainty. They (we) survive to move forward to face more uncertainty.

Watching allowed me to pay homage to my great uncle, and the approximate 800,000 other Brits who were killed or died as a consequence of their service. (Germany lost over 2 million soldiers in the war). Estimates put the total casualty numbers for both military and civilians at 40 million, half killed or died from wounds/infection.

I rate this film as 10/10, for many reasons. Directing, acting, set design, cinematography, musical score, the raw emotion it invokes. Some critics have said they never felt a connection with the characters, I suspect they never served in combat. While the brotherhood (including female War Fighters) is strong, there is also a common characteristic possessed by all War Fighters, the ability to focus on a mission and suppress emotion, even as those around the Fighter fall. This was the quality I recognized in the actors and why the viewer doesn't "bond" with the main protagonists; we, the viewer, were on the mission with them, we grieve as we can and move on.

Watch if you will, but know there is no pleasure in watching and the film will grab you and the beginning and not let you go. Even though we know the outcome of WWI, there is no joy, there is no peace. Watch because it will allow you a glimpse at the horror and brutality of war; reflect on their service and sacrifice. Note, as we (the viewer) are "walking" through the trenches, glancing shots of the young soldiers shows them with flat affect, isolation, almost apathy; this is the face of "shell shock," what we know call post-traumatic stress disorder.

For original WW1 footage, watch "They Shall Never Grow Old," an exceptional documentary.
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I Wanted to Hate This Hauntingly Beautiful Gift of a Movie
tgrafflin5 January 2020
I sat in a packed yet silent theater this morning and watched, what I believe to be, the next Academy Award winner for the Best Picture. I'm not at all a fan of war movies but I am a fan of great movies....and 1917 is a great movie. I have never been so mesmerized by set design and direction, the mass human emotion of this film is astonishingly captured and embedded magically in the audience. It keeps running through my mind...the poetry and beauty intertwined with the raw misery of war. Treat yourself....see this movie!
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Words fail me
gkdidaxi4 January 2020
This film is overwhelming. I have nothing further to add, other than the compelling need for eternal remembrance to those who sacrificed their lives in any way, we can not fathom. We, citizens of any country, today, should feel ourselves lucky and blessed to exist. A Happy New Year to all. George from Hellas. NB: do not give it a second thought; watch it; even if this genre is not your cup of tea. After all, it is much more than a feature film. It's a massive dedication to unselfishness. Do yourself a favour and watch it. And then watch it once more.
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Don't listen to critics!
allentyson-8923010 January 2020
Don't listen to the critics saying this movie is boring. This movie is one of the most tense and exciting movies I've seen in years. Amazing cinematography and overall amazing experience of a movie.
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We're living in such wonderful times...
diegosays7 January 2020
1917 is a poem. Is the most deep, impressive and realistic way of seeing what kinds of things happened in WWI. This movie made me leave the movies with tears in my eyes as if I have had a time travel experience to the World War I, and then waking up and realizing how wonderful are the times we are living in. 1917 is a must see movie for everyone.
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Here goes the Oscar for best cinematography
frederic-2213 December 2019
Guaranteed Oscar. A technical and visual triumph. Bravo Roger Deakins!
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An achievement
eevaivilo12 December 2019
It's a stunning watch from start to finish. The amount of work that went into this film alone deserves your attendance, and even then, the story never stalls, and has a fair balance between war and humanity, and has some of the most incredible camera work I've seen in a while. It's hands down my favorite film of 2019.
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MR_Heraclius10 February 2020
Absolutely incredible - I've seen it 3 times in cinemas and each time I find myself even more in awe of, blown away by, and in love with this film. It's thrilling, tense, gentle, satisfying, and deeply beautiful. As a huge fan of the war genre, this is unlike any other film I've ever seen - it finds its true strength in its unexciting, human moments rather than in the mindless chaos of firefights, while still managing to have some of the most exhilarating and edge-of-your-seat segments I've ever seen. Schofield is a brilliant and unconventional choice for the lead character, and his empathy and softness have made him one of my favourite characters of all time and an exceptionally rare example of how quiet tenderness truly can carry a war film better than loud banter and hyper-masculine bluster so often does. Krysty Wilson-Cairns is a genius and George Mackay said so much more in Schofield's silence than most actors could hope to in the grandest monologue. A masterpiece.
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One of the greatest war movies of all time
thompson1200128 December 2019
This is hands down one of the greatest war movies to ever hit the silver screen along with being very unique. The hell of the WWI battlefield is a subject that hasn't been covered in a long time and Mr. Mendes executes this perfectly. A movie like this couldn't have been made 50 years ago but with today's advances in film making along with a large studio budget Mr. Mendes takes us through an adventure every bit as harrowing as Saving Private Ryan and Thin Red Line.

The use of the single shot was brilliant as it brings the viewer along in the trenches and further adds to the realism to the film. I was surprised to hear that this was gimmicky effect from some critics, I feel Mr. Mendes nailed it brilliantly with the help of some fantastic cinematography. The set pieces were so realistic and detailed, a lesser director would've focused more on them but for this ride the camera never stops moving and it's a benefit to the film.

There was no slow part in the movie and the audience is enthralled with the journey from the first minute of the film. The dialogue was great and certainly was a key component of making the single shot method work here. There is no pointless exposition in the movie.

This isn't a piece to glorify war but rather demonstrate how one can be brave all the while showing their vulnerabilities and fear that any normal person would feel in that type of situation. There are no gratuitous bits in the film to exemplify heroism, just a simple story that allows the characters to shine and define bravery on their own terms.

From the acting, to the score, to the cinematography, editing and overall direction of the film Mr. Mendes absolutely knocked it out of the park. This isn't just one of the best war movies of all time, I believe it's truly one of the best pieces of film to ever grace the big screen. 1917 will leave you breathless and for many like myself, in tears when the journey comes to and end.

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Incredibly immersive
anthony-hamilton36012 February 2020
The one shot style the movie was shot in combined with the great acting makes this a must-see movie. Historically accurate and the best movie in 2020 so far.
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Could watch another 2 hours of this
Maverick_Manish12 February 2020
I love war movies and specially the one made with such details. I hope all wars end one day.
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While its undeniable that it is a Visual Masterpiece...
aarongnr16 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
It still wasn't fully satisfying for me.

Obviously the story is pretty much one line: deliver this message. This is ok, not every movie needs to be packed with story. But then it shouldn't waste too much time either, it should be faster paced, there should always be something to look at that's actually interesting. The stapled corpses get boring at some point.

The biggest problem I had with this movie, were the unnecessary coincidences. 1) The germans take every step to not leave food or anything behind, yet there is exactly 1 cow and 1 milk bucket left. Which leads to 2) In the town the protagonist jump exactly into this 1 house wherw there's also a baby that needs this milk. 3) The rat. It just runs into the trap exactly when our protagonists are there. Of course. 4) The plane. You guessed it: It lands exactly at our heroes feet. And they decide to help the german guy (why?) which leads to Blakes death.

Other than that, the movie really was spectacular and a feast for this eyes. But it is a movie with just a few too many problems to really shine for me.
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My favorite movie of 2019
fvj21995 December 2019
I saw a preview screening about two hours ago and I am still in shock. This is the best war movie I have seen in a decade. The shots Mendes uses and what he demands of his actors is nothing short of incredible. If you get a chance this will probably be the last must see movie of 2019. I will be seeing this again on release.
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An honest review from an impartial adult viewer
zoransasha17 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
I knew nothing of the film heading into the theatre other than it was based on WW1.

Cinematography, lighting, yes brilliant. That of course doesn't make a film deserve an 8.7 rating.

This is a war film for the Marvel generation. There is limited emotion shown by the main characters, scenes that suspend reality and cliche, cliche, cliche.

Our hero finds a bucket of unspoilt milk at an abandoned farmhouse beside the only cow in sight.

A trip wire is tripped by a rat in a bunker in which the two soldiers are in, one is in scratched while the other is buried under rubble, He is dragged out of the rubble with not a scratch, only to have some dust in his eyes. Yet the explosion was so significant it forces the entire large bunker to collapse.

Our hero is shot at by a sniper while crossing the bridge. I thought at this point that we finally might be able to see a tense scene. In other good war films this game of cat and mouse might have lasted several minutes. No need. Our hero somehow immediately locates the position of the sniper and is able to shoot and would him. Stunning marksmanship.

Yet only two scenes later our hero is running through a town in rubble being shot at by German soldiers no more than 20 yards away and isn't hit.

The worst part though, even worse than the tacky scene with the French woman and child, is his escapade down the river, through the rapids, and down a waterfall only the exit the river right at the point at which the battalion he was attempting to locate is luckily only 15 yards away.

Things just seem to randomly work out for our hero, and quickly. There needed to be a few sequences where the hero is faced with the enormity of the situation, loneliness, desolation. Rather each time one chapter is finished he is immediately assisted in movies to the next.

This film pales in comparison to films like Saving Private Ryan and Platoon. An opportunity lost. I left the cinema modestly entertained yet empty and disappointed.
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Excellent piece of filmmaking.
Jozinek15 February 2020
This movie is an excellent watch: brilliant set design, incredible acting all around as well as an amazing soundtrack that fit the events of the film perfectly. I also really liked the writing which delivered humorous banter and the sharing of funny stories amongst the young men sent to fight in a horrific war. I felt like it reinforced the idea that these soldiers are so close to each other that they're like children at school: constantly mocking one another and telling their own funny anecdotes. Another aspect of this film that was incredible was the atmosphere. Grimy and haunting environments (for instance, No Man's Land laden with corpses, rats and a miserable grey and cloudy sky) with eerie music was just a perfect combination.

I'd say the only negative I have with this film is that it was hard to understand what some of the actors were saying at times. But other than that, I don't think I really have any other negative things to say about it. So to conclude, I absolutely recommend 1917, you'll be captivated as well as shocked (in a good way) it's a well deserved 9/10 from me ;).
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10/10 for Technique and Cinematography... 4/10 for Story and Characterization...
GenoWashingline13 January 2020
It's an experience, certainly, and I do recommend seeing it in a good cinema.

Deakins was fantastic, absolutely, some stunning cinematography.

But I found the movie incredibly disappointing overall. Feels like a missed opportunity, a very interesting experiment that just does not quite work.

Most of the movie felt like a series of Call Of Duty cut scenes, a video game you had no control over, a really odd feeling, and some of the scenes were like a video game in content with reality stretched to almost breaking point.

To me it was an adventure movie rather than a 'war movie', much more like Indiana Jones than Saving Private Ryan... To relate it to another movie I felt it reminded me very much of The Revenant in story and style, but like that movie it felt rather empty to me.
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A technical masterpiece
eelen-seth6 December 2019
Sam Mendes' war drama is set during World War I and very personal to him, as it tells a story his grandfather used to tell him when he was still a young lad. Dedicated to Mendes' hero, this drama cuts deep when we join two young soldiers on a mission to deliver a message that could possibly save thousands of fellow combatants.

Filmed and edited as if it was one long take, the camera never leaves our main protagonists, Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman) and Schofield (George MacKay), out of its sight. Mendes (Skyfall) and co-writer Krysty Wilson-Cairns (Penny Dreadful) therefore corner themselves by relying on this kind of linear storytelling, to tell a very focused but at times a somewhat thin tale. Some of the scenes are so empty, it will for sure test audiences' patience. Technical, '1917' is a true feast for the eyes and ears.

Roger Deakins' (Blade Runner 2049) cinematography is once again breathtakingly superior to anything else you've seen this year, and for sure will be the one thing people unanimously praise. Sound editing/mixing, visual effects and production design are all outstanding. These are the things, people will remember. It is Thomas Newman's (Passengers) score that elevates every moment happening in front of you, intensifying the emotions brought by our main characters. And although MacKay (Captain Fantastic) and Chapman (Game of Thrones) do a pretty phenomenal job at capturing the true essence of their characters going through a literal hell, it's the side characters with little-to-no screen time who steal their spotlight. Andrew Scott (Fleabag), Mark Strong (Shazam!), Richard Madden (Rocketman) and Benedict Cumberbatch (Dr. Strange) are checkpoints along the way, but man, do they impress with the few lines they're given.

1917 is without a doubt a technical masterpiece, that will inspire many filmmakers, but I can't feel a bit let down. As an overall film, it wants to play a heavy tune on your heartstrings, but can't reach that level of sentiment, because the focus on technicalities pulled me out of the story. It for sure is one of the better films 2019 has brought to the big screen, yet a bit more focus on the script could've made this the cinematic masterpiece of the decade. Nonetheless, I recommend watching this on the biggest screen possible and enjoy another fine piece of cinema brought to you by Sam Mendes.
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Riveting, hauntingly beautiful and mesmerizing
jashminocha4 December 2019
The entire movie made to look like it's shot at one single take, this is possible because of extraordinary talented 14 times Academy Award nominee cinematographer Roger Deakins. This man is a genius, the movie is shot beautifully. it is mesmerizing to a watch world war 1 movie like it is happening right in front of you. The pacing is phenomenal. The only real flaw in the movie is that there are no great character building movements like other war movies but that is also intentional because, the main intention or motive is to save lives and not focus on characters in the movie and that works.
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Good but not great
shadden6617 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
The one-shot look of this movie was interesting. Wasn't sure if I was going to like that that approach to filming but it worked for this film.

The movie looked fantastic and the scenes and shots were breath taking. Sound and music score really helped a viewer on an emotional level as well.

While I was engrossed and drawn into this film from start to finish, after it was over and I had time to reflect on it, I found it not the profound masterpiece others have stated it as.

The plot in general was unrealistic - there are better ways to deliver a message than sending two soldiers across enemy lines and relying on luck and hope.

Some of the scenes dragged as well, which caused the movie to lose momentum for me. Felt the build up often yes, but then there would be scene that made me lose interest (truck ride. French woman & baby).

Acting wasn't spectacular either, from anyone in the film. You can have all the explosions and battle scenes you want that look great, but if the actors can't carry the script along it won't work as a whole. This is why the comparisons that mention Saving Private Ryan don't work for me - those actors drew you in with their performances. That didn't happen here, and between the acting and the momentum losing scenes, is why I cant rate this film any higher.

Close, but missed the mark for a perfect film, but a good watch none the less.
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mmkkelly18 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
First let me say the beginning sequences were shot almost perfectly. I was really into the first 20-25 minutes of the movie. I was engaged and thinking about how I was going to tell my sons that if they get a chance to go watch it in the theater. The cinematography and music were gripping. Then..... as the 2 main characters (solider A and soldier B) get through the initial German traps, and enter into an open field with a cow, a barn, and a pale of fresh milk, the movie goes down hill fast. I was literally laughing at the ridiculousness of the plot and situations. A & B, whose duty it is to transport a message to (2) battalions, warning the battalions are falling into a German trap. Soldier A, has an older brother who is possibly going to be slaughtered in the trap. With the cow and milk pale in the background, A & B find themselves helping a German airplane pilot out of his burning plane after witnessing an aerial dog fight. This is right after they go through hundreds of yards of seeing their dead countrymen. This is also after they almost get blown up (should have been into 1000 pieces) from booty traps (goonies reference). They help the German guy? Help him? Well, the German guy proceeds to knife Soldier A and kill him. That sequence made me almost leave the theater. I should have because the remaining parts of the movie just got worse. Soldier B still had a message to deliver. B proceeded to get picked up by a convoy of English Soldiers in trucks, who showed up a split second after the cow, milk, plane sequence. As if the trucks showing up was not ridiculous enough, the truck B was in got stuck in the mud moments later. B then convinces 15 or so other soldiers to help him push it out of the mud. Well, they miraculously do this, only to find that they can drive another few hundred yards. Our message delivering solider B leaves them and then now has to make it past the storm trooper German snipers. I call them storm troopers, because just like storm troopers, they are unable to hit their target. On one of the first sniper situations, the sniper gets hit by a bullet, so B thinks. However, when B goes to check to see if he shot the sniper, he opens the door full swing with his entire body facing the wounded sniper. B then takes a bullet? Or something happens where he gets knocked back down a small flight of stairs. After he wakes, he evades some more storm troopers, then kicks open a small horizontal door to find a woman and a baby, along with a beautiful fire. Thankfully B had fresh milk. B then leaves as it is getting close to morning. He evades a couple storm troopers only to find a younger storm trooper that he tries to shush. B actually puts his finger up to the storm trooper to shush him? Huh? Was this part of Jedi training? When that doesn't work he chokes him instead. Much to B's surprise, the choking worked better than the shushing. Go figure? B then runs and runs evading lots of lots of laser guns. Oops sorry, bullets. Then he jumps into a raging river where he smashes his head. Thankfully he has a hard head. If that is not silly enough, the rivers puts him exactly where he needs to be. Right up to a Battalion sitting in a large circle, listening to a guy singing. UGH, that was so bad. B still needs to get his dry message that was soaked in the river to the commander. He proceeds to evade lots of bombs from enemy fire to do this. But thankfully B makes it. A cameo by Benedict Cumberbatch as the commander cannot save this flop. B saves the second wave. B meets A's brother, even though he was in the first wave that was already deployed and supposed to be slaughtered.

I just have to say why? Why do we need to accept these movies and call them Oscar winners? Yes, the cinematography should get an award possibly. Maybe the score. But the overall movie was just plain terrible.
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Moving, mesmerizing and magnificently constructed, "1917" is a monumental masterpiece.
TheDuckKnight71315 February 2020
After it won seven BAFTAs and garnered ten Academy Award nominations, I knew I had to see "1917." This World War 1 epic helmed by two-time "James Bond" director Sam Mendes, that's crafted to look like a single, unbroken two-hour-long shot (which has never been attempted with a film of this scale) sounded like something truly special. As I didn't want to miss out on seeing one of the most ambitious and colossal films to have been released over the last couple of years, I went to see "1917" with very high expectations... and I'm delighted to say that it surpassed every single one of them!

"1917" isn't just an astounding technical achievement; it's also a haunting, soul shaking and earth-shattering motion picture that completely immersed me within its horrific and desolate world. I was utterly captivated from the peaceful opening few seconds to the poignant and emotional climax, I was invested in the characters and I was blown-away by the calibre of filmmaking mastery on display. "1917" is exceptional and I can't wait to explain why.

Sir Sam Mendes directed "1917" brilliantly; he expertly balances the terror and brutality of war with the heartfelt human interactions that are at the core of the film, thus creating mournful moments alongside nail-biting set-pieces. It's astonishing because most of the first act of "1917" simply revolves around the two leads walking and talking before they encounter the next obstacle in their way, yet the film is never dull or slow.

Having worked on films such as "The Shawshank Redemption", "Skyfall" and "Blade Runner 2049", Roger Deakins has proved himself to be one of the greatest cinematographers in film history, so it's no surprise that "1917" is one of the most visually awe-inspiring movies that I've ever seen. The decision to film this movie as if it were shot in one take isn't just a cheap gimmick, it causes the audience to become like an invisible third character in the narrative as they follow the two young soldiers across No Man's Land, over isolated farmland and through a decimated town. This technique gives the film an unflinching and in-your-face attitude towards the horrors of war, because as the camera never cuts away, the viewer can't escape from the grisly carnage on screen. The one-take effect also adds to the urgency and tension of "1917", as we experience the events of the plot in (mostly) real-time and see each sequence from the character's perspective.

But the visuals in "1917" don't just add the plot and characters, they're also breath-taking to look at. The sequence set within the burning town lit only by flares and flames is tremendous and the shot that's been prominent in the film's marketing of George MacKay's character sprinting through the charging soldiers is one of the most stunning and eye-widening images I've seen in a long time!

The performances in "1917" are fantastic. Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay as Lance Corporal Blake and Lance Corporal Schofield are terrific, they had the arduous task of carrying most of the film alone, but their believable chemistry and superb performances made me root for their characters and kept me riveted. The other members of the cast, including Benedict Cumberbatch, Andrew Scott, Colin Firth and Mark Strong, all do a fine job, but they feel more like cameos than properly fleshed out performances.

An aspect of "1917" that I have to praise is Thomas Newman's phenomenal score. The music he composed for "Skyfall" is one of my favourite film scores of all time so I expected the soundtrack in "1917" to be great, which of course it was. The music heightens the mood of each scene, whether it be to enhance the aching sense of grief and despair felt by the characters or to increase the intensity of an action sequence. It's not necessarily a score I'd listen to in my everyday life, but there's no denying that Thomas Newman's Oscar nomination for "1917" was very well-deserved.

And finally, without giving anything away, the ending of "1917" was the absolute best way to conclude the story. A lot of classic war films (like "The Bridge on the River Kwai" and "The Great Escape") leave a bad taste in my mouth because they don't fully commit to a profound and down-beat conclusion. In those movies, most of the key characters are killed off before the credits roll with a triumphant and jolly orchestral theme playing, which completely undercuts the gravity of the film's message and tone. In "1917" however, the final scene is not an explosive battle sequence, but a quiet and distressing conversation followed by a dialogue-free moment in which only sombre music is heard. The filmmakers let the weight of the sacrifices made and the futility of war wash over the audience, so that instead of walking out of the cinema thinking about a nice cup of tea and a snack, the harrowing ordeal that millions of men went through just over a century ago stays with you long after the movie ends.

In conclusion, "1917" is one of the best films I've seen in months. It's an incredibly nerve-wracking experience with impeccable performances and some of the most staggeringly spectacular cinematography I've ever witnessed. It's a film that made me jump out of my seat, hold my breath and almost moved me to tears. "1917" thrilled me and left me completely shell-shocked; it's not just a movie, it's an event that every film-fan deserves to experience on the big screen. Drop whatever it is you're doing and see it right now!
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Great to look at but the plot holes!
joehislop14 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
The effort Sam Mendes has gone to to create an authentic WW1 setting is astonishing. The scenes of the trenches, dead horses, bomb craters etc really put you in the scenes, and I was blown away by the film from a visual point of view. My problem is that the plot holes in the story were as big as some of the bomb craters. And after leaving, I realised they were too many and obvious to allow me to enjoy the film. (I'm about to reveal spoilers, so don't read on if you haven't seen it). So we all know that it's true that German forces retreated from trenches at times. As the distance between allied and opposing forces was as matter of yards in many cases, the fact they had abandoned their line would have been obvious over a relatively short period of time to the allies, because of air and recon intelligence. When the rat triggered the trip wire, both men were literally on top of the trap. It was a big enough explosion to collapse the entire tunnel, but they both survived without a scratch. After the pilot killed Blake, almost straight away, Schofield was suddenly joined by a huge troop of British Allies. Where did they come from? Why didn't they just take the message? When they drop Schofield off, he immediately starts getting sniped, while the troops are presumably right next to him. Why didn't they shoot back to help? Where did they disappear to? When Schofield is being chased, he kicks a door through in clear view of his pursuer, and the pursuer just runs on. Leaving Schofield to spend a random night with a woman and baby who happened to be surviving on their own with no food and water, hidden in the same ruins as German troops. There are more. I won't labour the point, but once you start seeing the flaws, they just all add up to make what is a beautiful film just too implausible for me.
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I dont get the raves
khalibidder17 January 2020
Sure, it had a few good cinematic shots.

But the story felt hollow - cardboard cutout characters - generic message delivery through enemy lands. Almost feel like they did it by the numbers.
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Tense from beggining till the end
florearadu14 February 2020
Before watching this movie I've heard plenty of people complaining that it was boring or that nothing actually happens. Nothing falser, the film is not only a good story of war, but also a lore of survival and a cinematography wonder. The idea of shooting the film in a continuous frame made the watchers feel more like they were right besides the soldiers on their journey through fire and death. Truth be told, there were couple of moments where the film seemed a little dragged, but in the end, for those who have a clue about WWI, that's how the entire war actually felt like: static and dragged. The way they managed to recreate the atmosphere of those times could have competed with a documentary in certain ways. Therefore, 1917 is, in my opinion a story of survival, somehow similar to what Nolan attempted with Dunkirk, only better, grace to the brilliant idea of taking the watcher from his seat, right in the middle of WWI, through the continuous shot technique.
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A century and three years old, 1917 relives the terrifying but excellent journey of two unsung heroes.
tomholland20169 January 2020
It features a realistic portrayal of a true remarkable story following the appalling journey of two soldiers having to call off the attack against Germany.

1917 is a massive technical achievement done right. The camera tracks this pair of individuals with a smooth good-looking one continuous shot for 110 mins! Despite it's not exactly one shot, the slick technique where it manages to trick the audience's eyes when a one shot jumps from the other is brilliant.

Cinematography is riveting to the eyes. There are so many important close-ups that picture a thousand words of these two soldiers about their past and their emotional trauma of the World War 1 effect. The better thing is it knows when to pull back from those close-ups to reveal the true scale of the horrendous and the shock of the battlefield.

Immersively done, 1917 sucks you into the sheer horror of experiencing the daunting moments of World War 1. You will feel as if you are walking with these men.

1917 is a highly suspenseful film from the front 'till the end of the line. I can assure you, the intensity is greater than 90% horror movies in the last decade. Sam Mendes escalates the tense atmosphere little by little before he uncovers everything in the final 20 minutes.

The set feels very much like a breath of air back in the early 1900s. It is unrelenting seeing objects, locations and soldiers are bombed into pieces, excellently enhanced by how specific the layouts are to justify the maddening era of bloodbath.

Though feels gimmicky, the music projects a powerful influence in increasing the gritty war moments and giving the sense that every scene should be appreciated as much as possible.

George Mackay & Dean Chapman's performances are great however, I wish they could give more. The former expresses his raw emotions clearly but sometimes, he falls flat and the latter's way of characters feels quite unbelievable due to Chapman's failure to construct expressions that is substantially connected to the impacts of war. For mega-awards like Golden Globe & Oscar, the lack of creativity to create nuances details on their face, resulted in them not nominated for Best Actor/Supporting Actor.

1917 renders much of a survival movie like Dunkirk rather than non-stopping war shootings genre. The plot is where the downside comes. Mind that it is great and propulsively executed but the emptiness of the sub-stories is what 1917 suffers.

1917 also hurts by putting in dialogues that does not drive the story further, but only to give a sense of what personality the characters embody.

Verdict: 1917 is a warfare that feels immersive and nerve-wracking with its glorious cinematography and visual designs however, it occasionally steps into the landmines which is forgivable as the whole movie transmits an experience that is substantially novelty and worth living for.
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