Film Review: Darkest Hour



This year I’m trying to change up how I present my reviews. Hopefully they’ll be more along the lines that if you liked X, then you should check out Y. They’ll be lighter on in terms of plot details and I guess more like a consumer report. If this works for you I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

During the early days of World War II, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who must decide whether to negotiate with Hitler, or fight on against incredible odds.

Director - Joe Wright
Starring - Gary Oldman, Kristin Scott Thomas, Lily James, Ben Mendelsohn & Stephen Dillane
In cinemas - January 11, 2018

After so many transformative performances, I’m starting to forget what Gary Oldman actually looks like. Mr Oldman’s ability to immerse himself into a performance is second to none. So who better to do turn to to capture a new take on Winston Churchill? Joe Wright’s latest film, Darkest Hour seems hell-bent on giving us an historically accurate portrayal of the rotund cigar-chomping booze-guzzling linguistic maestro.

Oldman’s performance is great fun and truly larger than life. Sadly though, the film focuses so much energy on Churchill, the rest of the film somewhat suffered for me. Several characters aren’t given nearly enough enough to do, namely Clemmie (Kristin Scott Thomas) and Elizabeth Layton (Lily James). Two fantastic performers that didn’t seem overly challenged by the material.

I couldn’t say this is a must-see film. It barely does what it says on the box. Unfortunately It’s a little too light and fluffy for what would’ve been an excruciatingly tense point of the World War 2. Not my cup of tea.

Direction - Typical Joe Wright; big and bombastic with a few nice touches
Performances - Oldman is fun, rest of the cast is left relatively underdeveloped
Writing - Little too on the nose for my liking
Cinematography - Some beautifully lit scenes, especially in the war-room sequences
Highpoint- Oldman barking at anyone in earshot and quaffing booze like a sailor.
Lowpoint - Painful sequence during which Churchill converses with the general public on a train 

Overall score - 6.5/10

- Stu 

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