movie film review | chris tookey


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  Dunkirk Review
Tookey's Rating
5 /10
Average Rating
8.71 /10
Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh
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Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Written by: Christopher Nolan

Released: 2017
Genre: DRAMA
Origin: US
Length: 106

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A disappointment, a visual marvel but one lacking in emotional resonance, the sort of film one respects for its craftsmanship - but feels distanced from.
(Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion)
[N]early two hours of uninspiring mayhem... Dunkirk uses history as a pretext to show off the director's fascination for calamity.
(Armond White, National Review)
Nolan seems somewhat uninterested in the humans standing amid his spectacular effects.
(Tony Macklin,
A beautifully shot, shallow, and nauseating video game. Too much spectacle and not nearly enough humanism, a truly special effect that money cannot buy. It's the equivalent of dry, stale bread.
(Avi Offer, NYC Movie Guru)
Other critics are raving about this one. Did we see a different movie? This one is terribly disjointed and you are never connected to the characters. Wanted to like it but...
(Gary Wolcott, Tri-City Herald)
The bits of Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk that are good are so good. The bits of it that are bad are just awful.... Dunkirk is, at the least, the movie that best exemplifies that which Nolan does well (the iconic tableaux, the operatic gesture) and that which most irritates about his work (the sense that all that awe and sleight of hand is disguising nothing much at all). The opening sequence is haunting and visually evocative, with pamphlets falling from the sky and a band of brothers running from the forever-unseen enemy; there's a wondrously- framed and shot sequence on the beach where our Tommy cringes as a row of bombs obliterates his mates, one by one, from far to near. The picture is a series of vignettes with scenes of surpassing beauty that put you through a miserable time to tell you that war is hell and the British are tough. (Also, if you don't see it in 70mm IMAX, you are a philistine who hates movies.) Mostly, it reminds me of Quentin Tarantino's The Hateful Eight: a film by a filmmaker I like that's finally guilty of everything the filmmaker had been previously accused. It makes me question my affection for the rest of his stuff. Dunkirk is going to be raised up as Nolan's masterpiece because it probably is his masterpiece. That doesn't mean it's good.
(Walter Chaw, Film Freak Central)
Artistically disjointed and historically unfactual, just the latest in a series of vastly overrated Christopher Nolan films.
(Louis Proyect,
Dunkirk seems to say that there are no heroes in war, only victims, suckers, survivors, and assholes. Perhaps Christopher Nolan's movie has a point after all. This movie sucks.
(Cole Smithey,
Given little context and even less character arc, Dunkirk emerges as an emotionally hollow exercise in wartime spectacle.
(Bill Clark, FromTheBalcony)
At a relatively short running time for an "epic", the characters are not developed enough to allow us to care about their survival.
(Jeanne Kaplan, Kaplan vs. Kaplan)
Dunkirk left me feeling vaguely dissatisfied, with too many unanswered questions. For me it missed the big picture. If that means I'm swimming against the tide, so be it.
(Leonard Maltin,
Dunkirk makes a fairly standard "war is hell" statement. It just appears to say more because Nolan went all William S. Burroughs and played cut-up with his script.
(Rick Kisonak, Seven Days)
The story of a miracle should have been thrilling; but given the non-linear approach, Dunkirk lacks the kind of center that would prompt the audience to stand up and cheer.
(Harvey S. Karten,
What it is, essentially, is 106 clamorous minutes of big-screen bombast that's so concerned with its own spectacle and scale that it neglects to deliver the most crucial element - drama.
(Kevin Maher, Times)
It is brave, and even admirable, but if you are fond of an emotional core? Then you will sorely feel the lack of it.
(Deborah Ross, Spectator)

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