This is not your typical war movie. Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk (2017) is an explorative piece of cinema that pushes the limits of custom narratives. It’s a thrill-ride unlike any other. Some may find the film’s lack of a dense, character-driven narrative peculiar, but Nolan’s groundbreaking directorial style creates a piece reminiscent of cinéma vérité. Paired with an immersive sound design, powerful score, and riveting camera work, Dunkirk truly transports the audience into the raw horrors of this historic event.
Nolan’s revolutionary methods sets Dunkirk as an unforgettable cinematic spectacle. He does not waste anytime with character backstories. Instead, he throws viewers straight into the action with a nonlinear timeline that unites the realities of war through land, sea, and air. Rather than focusing on a single character’s experiences, the film takes an unconventional poetic approach to incapsulate the themes of survival, sacrifice, and hope. However, its thematic narrative does not leave the audience without a connection to its string of characters. Unlike most other films that rely on the accompaniment of sympathetic, elaborate histories or emotional dialogue, the character development is solely provided through silent action. Without the support of the simple, yet powerful performances of its talented cast, Dunkirk‘s unique narrative construction would have surely failed.
To put it best, Dunkirk (2017) is expertise filmmaking and innovation at its finest. Christopher Nolan’s latest cinematic addition receives a 9 out of 10 without hesitation.
P.S. If you wish to get the full immersive experience of this film, I highly recommend splurging on IMAX (and if it’s available, definitely select the 70mm screening)!