Dunkirk: A Bloody Masterpiece without Blood

Release Date:Jul/21/2017
DirectorChristopher Nolan
CastTom Hardy、Kenneth Branagh、Fionn Whitehead、Mark Rylance、Cillian Murphy
Viola's Rating:8.7

As one of the most brilliant directors in 21st century, Christopher Nolan has created several excellent, if not epoch-making, science fiction feature films the past 20 years, and recently, he made his first attempt at war film, Dunkirk, which was released on July 21, 2017.

Developed from Dunkirk evacuation of Second World War, this historical, war action thriller demonstrates the story of how allied soldiers from Belgium, the British Empire and France are surrounded by the German army and evacuated during a fierce battle in World War II.

Written by Nolan, there are few but clever lines in “Dunkirk”. As a result of lack of hope, language barrier and the anguish of war, main characters depict the despair of warfare through their eyes and those silent body languages portray the soldiers’ emotions amazingly.
Aside from the decent cinematography and the storytelling of the true story, Nolan also showed humanity in the flick. As in “Titanic”, people do whatever they can to live; even if it requires sacrifice from others. It’s cruel, but real, and because it’s merely humanity, audience wouldn’t criticize the soldiers, but cheer for them no matter how they survive since being alive is the most important thing the soldiers could do at the time. Even though there are some depressing moments, noble deeds are demonstrated in the motion picture as well.
Nolan could’ve made “Dunkirk” one of those heroism movies, but he decided to cross out the magic of “naming”. Most of the characters are nameless soldiers, and even if those with names, they’re not mentioned a lot. Cillian Murphy’s role’s even called “Shivering Soldier” on the cast list. Unknown heroes they are, like the civilians whose little ships were commandeered by the Royal Navy, help each other to go through difficulties. Although evacuation isn’t victory, the success of it represents the effort Britain put together as a whole with one heart.
One of the crucial reasons that “Dunkirk” creates a nervous ambience is the score. Composed by Hans Zimmer, an Oscar winning composer, the string music builds up the anxiety and the ticking sound of Nolan’s pocket watch gives moviegoers the intensity of the war. Also, the rumble of boats’ engine and the vibration of planes approaching bring the audience to the beach in Dunkirk, France to experience the terrors of warfare.

“Dunkirk” is not an upbeat picture in any means, maybe even depressing, but how it depicts the cruelty of battle and the touching cooperation within it are indeed tearjerkers. Unlike regular war feature films, “Dunkirk” is a bloody masterpiece without shedding much blood, and is definitely the best film so far this year.
Picture Credit: IMDb


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