Christopher Nolan’s wartime film ‘Dunkirk’ shows the tense and real life events that took place when German troops converged on the British and French in WWII at the costal town of Dunkirk. Nolan had a budget of 100 Million USD and grossed at 525.6 million USD, given the ratings of 92% by ‘Rotten Tomatoes’ and an 8.1/10 by ‘IMDb’.
Nolan is a well established British director, among the most acclaimed and highest-grossing director. Nolan enlists a primarily English cast, with actors such as Fionn Whitehead, Tom Glynn-Carney, Jack Lowden, Harry Styles, Aneurin Barnard, James D’arcy and Barry Keoghan.The true story of ‘Dunkirk’ is portrayed by Nolan with an overlapping anthology, over 3 settings in 3 different timelines, all with titles and times displayed at the starting scene of each to allow for the audience to easily follow along with. This is a recurring theme within Nolan’s movies, making things simple to put the audience in the character’s shoes while maintaining the complexity of story line.
It is told with one storyline following Tommy on land, which takes place over a week. At sea showing civilians of Mr Dawson, Peter and George who are rushing out to rescue soldiers at Dunkirk, timeline of a single day. The final storyline is in the air, following the group of Spitfires which takes place over an hour.
These timelines all meet with Mr Dawson picking up the soldier of Tommy and with the pilot Farrier protecting their boat and the men on the beach at Dunkirk.’Dunkirk’ was made to be a suspense thriller through the use of sound and manipulation of time. Nolan uses scenes with groups of men put into terrifying situations which couples with the big theme of the film of having no backstory to the characters, allowing it to all be about that situation. This blank slate is what invites the audience to project themselves into the state of those men bringing in their own fear, having no backstory about the men to sympathise with, only that current situation. The film starts in the middle of the action because it’s not about the past, and abruptly ends as it’s not about the future; you are not given one perspective but all of them, to combine all of their experiences to create one moment in time.
I honestly do believe that Dunkirk will become a classic and has been a classic from the moment it was released, and I’m not just saying this to get a review out of the way. Classics texts to me are texts that have been published a minimum of 10 years ago, but I believe Dunkirk is an exception. It was based of the true events on Dunkirk beach 78 years ago, and has been produced in such a way that the audience literally feels like they are at war. It really makes the audience question; what would it be like to be right there at that exact moment in time? The recurring theme of Nolan not using CGI was present in ‘Dunkirk’ and the majority of the scenes were filmed in Dunkirk in the French coastal weather making for a highly realistic feel.
‘Dunkirk’ will be shown in the future to give whoever the audience is an authentic and touching experience, showing one of the many triumphant events of the disastrous WWII.