Sunday, October 19, 2008


War, romance

This map of the area around the small town of Ypres, Belgium (shown as the red symbol at the midway point) indicates the frontline at various stages from just east of the town progressing to the line on the right encompassing the village of Passchendaele. The assault was the first major international battle for the contingent of Canadian troops. The distance between the two solid lines is a mere 5 miles. It cost the lives of 140,000 Allied troops, roughly 2 inches of territory gained per dead soldier.

Paul Gross: Sergeant Michael Dunne
Caroline Dhavernas: Nurse Lt. Sarah Mann
Joe Dinicol: her brother David

No war story would be complete without some element of romance: this film devotes most of the time to just that and far less to the battle scenes. This may come as a disappointment to anyone looking for more action. For me it was enough because not since Saving Private Ryan has hand-to-hand fighting been so realistically presented on screen. It’s enough to make you want to stop all wars now.

This film is about Canadians during the First World War both at home and on the battlefield. The producers have gone to great lengths to accurately portray the battle scenes. It has that authentic look and feel about it. The acting is fine and the cinematography first-rate.

for war violence.

Actual black-and-white film footage and photos accompany the end credits. No one even moved while these were being shown. Having that many people stay after the end of a movie is rare indeed

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