1917 – Budget of $90 million – 1 hour and 59 minutes
Lance Corporal Thomas Blake is woken by his captain. He tells Blake to follow him and bring a friend. Blake wakes up is friend Lance Corporal Will Schofield. General Erinmore wants Blake and Schofield to send a message to the 2nd battalion of the Devonshire Regiment. The Regiment’s leader, Colonel Mackenzie, believes he has the upper hand because the Germans have retreated. However, this was a strategic maneuver. The Germans moved their line 9 miles back to ambush them with an attack like no other seen in the war. Blake and Schofield must find Colonel Mackenzie and tell him to stop the attack. If Blake and Schofield don’t deliver the message in time, 1600 men – including Blake’s older brother – will die. They will have to walk to the original German frontline through no-mans-land, and into enemy territory to deliver the message. Blake and Schofield are given extra supplies and sent on their way. Upon hearing their mission, a captain gives them a flare gun to signal when they have arrived at the original German frontline. Blake wants to leave now but Schofield tells him to wait until nightfall. Schofield has been through this before and received a medal for his service. Hearing his brother is in danger has lit a fire inside Blake, he is determined to go with or without Schofield now. The two men leave the trenches to carry out their mission.
With well-choreographed, continuous shots, this story – derived from the director’s grandfather’s accounts – will leave you with awe, heartbreak, and pride. These men conquer rats, barbed wire, tripwire, being buried alive, and the enemy with a stiff upper lip and bravery. With each step, they are reminded of the danger that lies ahead. They run across dead horses and dead men being eaten by scavengers and rotting away on the battlefield. During the few quiet moments, they take time to tell stories of home and the pain behind earning a medal. In these moments, you learn the truth and spirit behind both men. You should view this movie on the largest screen possible to enjoy its majesty. Be warned: if you or a loved one suffer from battle-related PTSD, this movie may be too much for you.
I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars
Did they feed us – Lance Corporal Blake
I have my uses – Lance Corporal Schofield
He who travels fastest travels alone – General Erinmore
Some men just want the fight – Captain Smith
I hoped today might be a good day. Hope is dangerous – Colonel Mackenzie
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