Tag: War

They Shall Not Grow Old

Peter Jackson has been busy of late. The New Zealand director’s steampunk-inflected adaptation of the fantasy novel Mortal Engines will land this Christmas, while cinemagoers lucky enough to live close to a screening have recently been treated to his moving, fascinating documentary They Shall Not Grow Old, for which he has assembled and retouched archive […]

0469 | The Eagle Has Landed

I have a soft spot for 1960s and 1970s adventure films set during the Second World War. You know the kind: big ensemble cast, some daring mission or other that needs to be undertaken with little or no chance of survival for the soldiers in question, and usually there’s lots of heroic derring-do to enjoy. […]

0430 | Suite Française

Irène Némirovsky didn’t manage to complete her three-part novel Suite Française as she was arrested by German forces in occupied France during the Second World War and sent to Auschwitz, where she would die. Her handwritten manuscript was discovered 60 years later, however, and it was published to critical acclaim in 2004, becoming something of […]

0427 | Good Kill

‘Good kill’ is the oxymoron repeatedly uttered by Ethan Hawke’s drone pilot in this latest film by Andrew Niccol, the writer and director of Gattaca and Lord Of War. As the story progresses it’s a phrase that becomes ever more hollow as we witness a number of strategic drone missile strikes upon supposed US military […]

0327 | The Imitation Game

Morten Tyldum’s The Imitation Game highlights a terrible wrongdoing, namely the treatment of British computer scientist, mathematician, logician and cryptanalyst Alan Turing (Benedict Cumberbatch) after World War II, when he was prosecuted for homosexual activities under archaic gross indecency laws. After a guilty verdict Turing accepted ‘treatment’ of oestrogen injections – a form of chemical castration – as an alternative to […]

0304 | Kajaki: The True Story

Paul Katis’s Kajaki: The True Story is a gripping account of real life events that took place in Afghanistan in 2006, and seems to me to be a thoroughly modern war film, both in terms of its portrayal of British soldiers and the day-long situation that they unwittingly find themselves in. Set near the Kajaki Dam, a place […]

0230 | American Sniper

Clint Eastwood shows no signs of slowing down, even at the ripe old age of 84, and the critical discussion that has followed the release of his latest film indicates that the veteran actor and notoriously-speedy filmmaker has never been more divisive; American Sniper has certainly touched a raw nerve, even if it remains to be seen whether […]

0196 | Fury

Considering Fury is a film that clearly sets out to deglamorize war, and to a certain extent is successful in doing so, David Ayer’s tale of an American tank crew at the end of World War II spends an unfortunate amount of time attempting to attract a mainstream cinema audience by offering flashes of brightness. For every grim, […]

0159 | Edge Of Tomorrow

[Please note: the following review contains a couple of spoilers, which I’ve had to divulge in order to discuss the movie, but rest assured I’m not giving away major plot twists like the fact that Darth Vader is revealed to be a woman in The Empire Strikes Back, or the revelation that the woman in […]

0068 | Escape To Athena

Ladies and gentlemen, I have to admit that my gast has been well and truly flabbered. I remember watching films like Escape To Athena in my youth; in fact I have vague recollections of watching Escape To Athena itself as a young ankle-biter, and what’s more I recall that I enjoyed it immensely. So it was […]

0032 | Cross of Iron

Cross of Iron, the only war film that Sam Peckinpah made, is an examination of the relationships between soldiers under heavy pressure. It explodes periodically with choreographed, bloody violence, and it is a war film with a distinctly anti-war message, painting a negative picture of authority within the German army during the Second World War. […]

0008 | Lebanon

Samuel Maoz’s Lebanon, much of which was filmed inside an Israeli tank, is an autobiographical film that won the Leone d’Oro at Venice’s International Film Festival in 2009. It addresses the director’s time spent as a young gunner fighting in the 1982 Lebanon war. Maoz – known then by the name Shmulik – was only […]