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" ‘Darkest Hour’ Review: Joe Wright Takes on the " Topic

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP11 Sep 2017 11:42 a.m. PST

…Political Side of Dunkirk

"Historical dramas are nothing unique, nor particularly are World War II movies. But when you combine one of Gary Oldman's best performances ever and the always-interesting filmmaker Joe Wright with these two tried and true genres, you get something positively electric. That's Darkest Hour, which chronicles the early days of Winston Churchill's (Gary Oldman) reign as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, which involved deciding how to approach the encroaching Nazi threat. Oldman is completely unrecognizable and wildly charming as Churchill in a performance people will be talking about for years, and Wright elevates what could have been a stale story to thrilling heights.

Darkest Hour begins in May 1940, a fraught period in Britain's life in which German forces were ever-encroaching on France, and British parliament decided Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's approach to the war was not working. The decision is made to have Chamberlain resign, and after agreeable choice Lord Halifax (played by Game of Thrones alum Stephen Dillane) turns down the appointment, everyone begrudgingly selects the bombastic, unpredictable Winston Churchill to take over.

The film wastes no time, opening immediately with Chamberlain's ouster and then following Churchill as he tries to find a winning strategy, all the while the British forces are being pushed further and further to the coast as city after city falls. When he assumes the post, most of the members of his war cabinet urge Churchill to negotiate a peace treaty so the Nazis—who by now will clearly make it to the U.K.—will look favorably on them. But Churchill, who warned of Hitler years earlier, works to convince everyone to fight as he also navigates an exit strategy for 300,000 British troops at Dunkirk…"
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VCarter Supporting Member of TMP11 Sep 2017 11:48 a.m. PST

I saw the preview when I went to see "Dunkirk". It was the movie I was hoping to see.

gamershs Supporting Member of TMP11 Sep 2017 12:46 p.m. PST

The Gathering Storm was another good move which covers Churchill's time frozen out of the government up to the time he was appointed First Lord of the Admiralty.

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP05 Mar 2018 11:50 a.m. PST

Reposting this here too: "At times I thought Oldman was channeling Mr. Grainger from Are You Being Served?

I don't know much about Churchill evidently, but I always assumed he was more confidant and composed than portrayed here. Maybe his public persona was more controlled than his private one where he's at times impish and playful.

I did like the film, but found him slightly less imposing than when I had gone in."

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