Home Customer reviews Darkest Hour
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Customer reviews Darkest Hour

user74
1#
user74 Published in October 22, 2018, 11:17 pm
Customer reviews Darkest Hour

Customer reviews Darkest Hour


Paul Tapner
2#
Paul Tapner Reply to on 4 June 2018
Darkest Hour is an historical drama/character biopic that tells the story of Winston Churchill's first month as Prime Minister. A time when World War Two went from bad to worse for Britain, and when all seemed lost. In the face of this, with other politicans clamouring for peace with the Nazis, with seemingly no hope of victory, it was going to be a very stern test of his leadership abilities...

Historical dramas are usually dramatisations, in that things will be altered slightly in order to make it work as a movie. Thus those who want to nit pick such things will find enough to keep them happy here, despite a stellar effort it makes in so many ways. They will particularly latch onto a scene which is an even less accurate depiction of travel on the London Underground than that seen in 'Thor: the Dark World.' But some of this will be an education to many, and it does manage to do what Dunkirk, by virtue of it's focus, couldn't, and mention those who had to hold the line. To the last man.

And yet where this does succeed brilliantly is in the character drama department. It's a story of a man facing so many challenges, so many things stacked against him, and so many personal issues, and yet finding the strength to come through. In that respect, it is superb. Gary Oldman does a brilliant job of transformation acting in the lead, and you do forget that you're watching an actor in makeup after a while. As a character drama in this way, it does a great job of making the viewer think. What you might do in similar circumstances. Would you fight for a seemingly lost cause, or would you want to try and get peace?

And said tube scene is worth it because it reminds us of a salient truth that is often forgotten. Politicans don't govern us. They govern for us. You would wish for a present day politician who would do this.

So whilst it's not quite perfect and thus not quite a five star film, for what it does as outlined above, it is a very memorable and worthwhile watch, and well worth a look.

The dvd has the following language and subtitle options:

Languages: English, Castilian Spanish, Russian.
Subtitles: English, Arabic, Castilian Spanish, Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Hindi, Icelandic, Lavian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Portugese, Russian, Swedish.

It's also English audio captioned.

The disc begins with a single trailer, which can be skipped via the next button on the dvd remote.

Extras:

A commentary from the director.
Into Darkest Hour. A seven minute overview of the project. Interesting viewing, if a bit brief.
Gary Oldman: becoming Churchill: four minutes about his performance. A fascinating look at the actor's craft. Well worth a watch.

The disc also comes with the usual flyer with code for downloading a copy of the film onto a digital device.
rbmusicman/and/movie-fan'
3#
rbmusicman/and/movie-fan' Reply to on 4 June 2018
Many great things have been said and written about the film, mostly about Gary Oldman's portrayal of Winston Churchill, which is indeed a Oscar worthy performance in my view.
For myself having now watched the film i must agree that the praise attributed is well deserved even though as many will no doubt point out the film has been tailored for theatrical presentation so is not totally historically accurate, however the theme does give a good indication of the struggle the incoming Prime Minister in May 1940 had to face.
With the entire British Army in retreat in Europe cornered and seemingly trapped on the beaches of Dunkirk the U.K Government are faced with the prospect of trying to negotiate with the German and Italian authorities or stand alone with defeat looking inevitable.
Winston Churchill would not only order the unlikely evacuation of around 300,000 troops from Dunkirk.
Britain would stand virtually alone for the following 18 months or so.
The film is in my view very worthy of a viewing.
Though not portrayed in the film the country would later in 1940 face the 3/4 month Battle of Britain July 10th - Oct 31st and indeed the Blitz 7th Sept 40' - 10th May 41'
JIM LAD
4#
JIM LAD Reply to on 7 June 2018
As the film progresses you find yourself being seduced more and more into believing that you are actually witnessing Winston Churchill in action. Gary Oldman's performance, portrayal and delivery is nothing short of riveting and absolutely superb. This is not withstanding the raft of excellent supporting actors who compliment his role. Everything works, from the well observed little anecdotes, to the subtle humour, and the dark forboding atmospherics and poignancy that create and set the scene for Great Britain and its people, poised on the abyss of entering the second world war against the Nazis. A thoroughly enjoyable and emotive film that will draw out your resolve and true British grit! How fortunate our country was to have had Churchill at its disposal at that moment in history. I will certainly watch this film more than once and expect to glimpse moments missed first time round, purely because I was so engrossed and caught up with its intensity on the first viewing!
Mrs. L. Evans
5#
Mrs. L. Evans Reply to on 1 September 2018
The Darkest Hour warrants 5 stars for Gary Oldman's mesmerizing performance alone. In addition, the outstanding efforts of the prosthetic, make-up and costume departments brought Churchill to life on the screen. The supporting cast was outstandingly good with a special mention going to Stephen Dillane as the machiavellian Viscount Halifax. Lighting, cinematography and direction were superb with some of Wright's renowned tracking shots included for good measure. Churchill's War Rooms had a very claustrophobic and oppressive atmosphere that added to the seemingly hopeless struggle that Britain faced.

There has been a fair amount of criticism concerning the historical inaccuracy of the film which surprises me, for surely those critics should be able to differentiate between cinematic entertainment and academic environment?

A superb film that is performance-based and one that I will certainly watch again - 5 stars!
Jonathan
6#
Jonathan Reply to on 10 June 2018
Overall I found the film convincing and enjoyable. I thought Gary Oldman gave a fantastic performance as Churchill and the supporting cast were very strong. I particularly liked the gloom of the admiralty war rooms and the portrayal of a fractured Conservative party. There was one historically doubtful scene towards the end which let the film down a bit, but I don't want to spoil anyone's enjoyment, so I won't go into details. Worth watching in tandem with Dunkirk.
wordsmith44
7#
wordsmith44 Reply to on 3 July 2018
Anchored by an extraordinary award-winning performance by Gary Oldman, this handsomely mounted account of the dangerous defeat-laden
times for Britain and her allies in 1940 as Churchill takes on foes without and within is a reminder of how precarious those times were in many
ways, not least for the fractious differences of views among the powerful about Nazi Germany and her intentions. The rescue of the troops
from the beaches of Dunkirk (surely the greatest escape of WW2) is skimmed over, perhaps for cinematic story-telling purposes, but the
stranger than fiction account given in his 1982 book "Skies to Dunkirk - A Personal Memoir" by Air Marshal Sir Victor Goddard KCB CBE MA
sets the record straight. A group-captain on Lord Gort's staff, he was sent on a risk-laden flight from France to the UK with a message
from his BEF commander for naval help in securing the rescue of the men at Dunkirk. After landing in England, Goddard reached London and
achieved an entry into a meeting of the Defence Chiefs, where, faced with the limitations of naval help on offer, expressed the view to amazed
senior officers unused to such forthright behaviour from a junior officer, that boats of all sizes and types be sent to help in the evacuation..
He was requested to leave the meeting but later learnt that his impetuous view had been taken up and the rest - as they say -is history!
Will Mac
8#
Will Mac Reply to on 25 July 2018
It's a fine film with terrific acting from Gary Oldman (always a dream part provided you're good enough to pull it off - and he certainly was!). The supporting cast (for that's what they were) were all very good, too, especially Kristen Scott Thomas who was excellent (as so often) in the role of "Clemmie".
So why not 5 stars? Because, although the 'plot' was well scripted for the most part (you do have to condense one month into 2 and a bit hours) - and not overtly historically inaccurate - the fictitious scene of WSC on the underground was laughable. Clearly, too, it seemed totally false to me that George VI would refer to Hitler as A-dolph Hitler - as Americans do. Also director Joe Wright seems over committed to using aerial shots (one at the beginning would be fine but others were inserted to keep us amused) - not needed, it was a better film than that.
I don't doubt that well meaning aficionados of the era will notice inaccuracies but i think the film captured the severity of the situation unfolding at the time - when UK was on the brink of invasion and total defeat by a fascist regime - and the lack of crucial leadership before Churchill took control
Despite the 'underground nonsense' it's certainly well watching. (I commend it to the House.)
Jim Pinnells
9#
Jim Pinnells Reply to on 5 July 2018
This film was greatly hyped, so I expected a let-down. But no -- many aspects of "Darkest Hour" were well done. The feeling of a nation profoundly unsure of itself, led by men bent on personal survival, panicked into a corner by events largely of their own making ("peace in our time") but now turning the tables on history, standing alone and defying the ravaging Fascist wolf-pack: that feeling came across, I must confess in my case, tearfully. Stirring stuff. There were some clever devices in the script that threw a new light on events and gave them a fresh twist -- especially Miss Layton was a gem. The despicable gang of Tory -- dare I say it -- traitors was well done too. Winston (or Winnie as my Dad used to call him) was brilliantly acted, but, I found his part seriously underwritten. I needed one of two things: either an explanation of how this friendless, partyless, unsupported drunken braggart had become First Lord of the Admiralty and enjoyed a seat on the front bench, or (better) some evidence in the character himself of the integrity, the moral strength, the grandeur that must have been Churchill's. Sadly, I found neither explanation nor evidence. There was clownish deconstruction aplenty -- this scurrilous old soldier had to be told by his secretary how to make a V-sign? He was that barmy? Doubt it. Much mention is made of the scene that purports to cover a trip of one stop (Charing Cross to Westminster) on the District Line. Obviously it never took place as shown -- but that isn't important. Far more to the point: it COULD never have taken place as shown. Speaking as a Londoner born in 1939, that isn't how it could ever have been. Of course, a film does not have to be slavishly true to history: but it should be convincing.

Much of the film was convincing. Four stars.
Tinkerbell
10#
Tinkerbell Reply to on 15 August 2018
I missed this film when it was on at the cinema, so I was glad when it became available on Prime, as I really enjoyed watching it and thought Gary Oldman was excellent playing the part of Churchill. I have an interest in the history that surrounds the events of the Second World War and I also feel that it is very important to remember the fact, that we wouldn't have the freedom we enjoy today, if it wasn't for the young men who fought for it during that dreadful time. We must never forget the 383,300 British troops who lost their lives as a result. This figure of course, doesn't include all those allied troops who also fought and died to save us and the rest of Europe from Nazi rule. They all paid the ultimate sacrifice for our liberty and we must always remember that. I truly believe that Churchill was the strongest leader this country has ever had and thank God he came to office when he did, because I think if Chamberlain had still been Prime Minister, the outcome may have been very different.
L. Rushton
11#
L. Rushton Reply to on 5 June 2018
I thought there were a lot of good moments, that lead to a re-creation of the feeling of the time. I'm not old enough, but I do remember the surroundings in the 50's and the greyness and brownness of the world at that time. Of course Gary Oldman played a terrific part, skating on the edge of retrospective glory and certitude. A big let down for me, was the scene in the tube train, where he supposedly got his inspiration from the "ordinary people". That was seriously twee and unnecessary. Overall it was about the right length to describe the few days of beginnings of that wartime period.
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