Posted by: greercn | July 27, 2017


All 106 minutes of Christopher Nolan’s extraordinary movie attack your ears and eyes. With few words, you are swept on and off the beach, water and air.

It’s like being on one of the crazier Disney rides. Only after you have left the cinema do you reclaim your normal breathing and ask yourself questions.

Where are the French? At least they are hinted at. The Germans are planes, bombs and absence.

Even the Belgians fare better than the women. Did you know that military telephonists – all women – were among the last to be evacuated from Dunkirk’s beach?

According to this, it’s a gathering of men. There are no women at all in the acting credits.

World War 2: I am just plain sick to death of you being present in just about every movie I watch. WW2 fatigue is a thing and I have it. With so much war in the world, you’d think current events might make it onto the big screen?

Having said that out loud, this is lavish and starry. You get Mark Rylance, Tom Hardy and Cillian Murphy in key roles. Michael Caine’s voice gives information and instruction to the pilots in the sky.

And Harry Styles is credible, in that I didn’t recognise it was him, at all.

A whole bunch of very talented actors have key moments. It all runs at a breathless pace and faster than you can say Hans Zimmer (who wrote the slightly intrusive music) and Hoyte Van Hoytema (cinematographer), you’re left wanting more. As a bonus, you’re bottom isn’t numb.

It was a very full Stratford East Picturehouse and the only sound you heard was me, squeaking “ooh, Michael Caine’s voice” and I was, quite correctly, shushed.

There is lots to challenge here, historically and structurally. But you will enjoy it, while it’s on the big screen. It’s original, stylish and offers a new approach to the genre of war movie. Even if, like me, you’ve had enough of WW2 this summer to last you a lifetime.



  1. I went to see this and enjoyed it. I didn’t recognise Harry Styles either and just thought he was a credible actor too, so well done to him.

    • It’s strange to think I didn’t recognise him! Thanks for the comment.

  2. Educational more than entertaining, for me. I want to read up more on Dunkirk, and I will. I see so few films that it was a pleasure to read your review the same day I saw it. Recognized Kenneth Brannagh (sp?) and Tom Hardy, but neither Harry Styles nor Cillian Murphy. I hate watching people drown, so I averted my eyes a few times when I feared that it would happen.

    • It gets a lot of the facts wrong, yet at least one veteran has said that watching It felt very real to him. If it makes people research the real history of Dunkirk, that’s a good thing. Thanks for the comment.

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