Posted 19 January 2012 - 09:27 PM
With a long held interest in The First World War, and as someone who works in the industry, I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this film . I haven't seen the play, so I can not base my review on that or make any comparisons. For sure, it is a story wrapped up in a certain amount of hollywood schmulzh, the John Williams score is OTT and there's more than the occasional inaccuracy but I very much doubt that any other film with such high production values will be made about WW1. For this reason alone, I would say that it's worth seeing on the big screen, rather than from the comfort of your armchair. At my local cinema, it only cost £2.75 on a Tuesday night, so it was well worth it.
I also look forward to the remake of All Quiet On The Western Front , being filmed this year. Anything that may stimulate interest in the great war can only be a good thing, in my opinion. It strikes me that whilst this forum is full of many passionate, knowledgeable experts , keen to share their interest with others, it also has a small share, of self righteous cynics, for whom any attempt at bringing the subject matter of WW1 into the mainstream is often met with scepticism and derision. The Hollywood attempt at WW1 might not be everyone's cup of tea, but if you think you can do better, then arm yourself with a video camera, a group of re-enactors, and give it your best shot.
What should also be remembered is that this film was responsible for creating a fair number of jobs here in the UK. It was shot entirely on location and in studios here, and the post-production was done here, all utilising a fair amount of British actors, technicians, crew and talent. Surely this is a good thing. I didn't work on the film myself, but would have loved to have done so !