Journey Behind Enemy Lines in 1917

Robert Timmler

“1917” is the Oscar nominated war film that takes place on April 2, 1917 during World War I, where two young English soldiers, Lance Corporal Black (played by Dean-Charles Chapman) and Lance Corporal Schofield (played by George MacKay) are ordered by General Erinmore (played by Colin Firth) to deliver a message across enemy lines to Colonel Mackenzie (played by Benedict Cumberbatch). The message states that Mackenzie is walking his men into a trap lead by the Germany army. Black and Schofield have to swiftly venture out into enemy territory to reach Colonel Mackenzie before the attack or 1,600 men will die. 

1917 is an emotionally immersive war film that has empathic characters, gritty action sequences, and a thrilling story. Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay give great performances as Black and Schofield, who are simply two companions that have to stick together if they want to survive this deadly mission. The story is simple yet is full of gripping moments that display the horrors of war and the unbreakable companionship between soldiers. The set design visual displays the terror of war with corpses of solders and animals scattered across trampled battlefields that gives the film a haunting mood. The film being one shot is not only a technical achievement, but also further develops the characters, intensifies the action sequences, and allows for some visually stunning scenes. The weakness of the film is that at a point the intensity dips and the film begins to drag a little bit, but picks up again near the end. 

1917 is a visually gritty war film that stands out from other war films and is a testament to innovative filmmaking that enhances the visual storytelling of film. 1917 gets 9/10 stars.