When I saw the first trailer for 1917, I thought it looked interesting. The second trailer, even more so. The movie just opened here last Friday, so I reserved my AMC Stubs ticket to see it. I saw a YouTube video reviewer suggest seeing it on the largest screen possible, so I went with the BigD screen option at AMC Tyler.
I watched 1917 last night, and holy shit, what a fucking incredible experience of a film that was.
Two soldiers are tasked with delivering a message to stop an attack during World War I. That’s it. All they have to do is walk cross country from where they are to where they need to be during a war where the enemy has pulled back their forces and are in retreat. The general sending these two men knows its a trap, the colonel leading the attack does not, he thinks his offensive will end the war.
Colin Firth, Andrew Scott, Mark Strong & Benedict Cumberbatch have single scene roles that are spread out through the film.
Sam Mendes directed & co-wrote the film. And its done as a single shot with only one obvious cut, over an hour into it. The camera is always moving, shifting focus, following the soldiers and their eyeline point of view. And that helps bring tension and drama to the scenes as they cross No Man’s Land, explore an abandoned German bunker, and make their way across France.
Seriously, 1917 has made me start my “Best of 2020” list already.