I watched 2 movies this weekend. “Their Finest,” from BBC films. I wasn’t sure why I hadn’t heard of Their Finest. Probably because it never actually got an American release, and even its UK release came two years after it acquired distribution. But its cast is everything good in the world: Gemma Arterton and Bill Nighy, who’ll join us in a bit, via SKYPE.
The second film I saw was “Dunkirk,” from Christopher Nolan. Of course, through advertising, we know a bit about ‘Dunkirk” the film, if not the event itself during WW2. But, the film begins in harrowing fashion as the first image on screen is at once bizarre and beautiful — a handful of British soldiers walking a French town’s deserted streets as scraps of paper flutter down from the sky. They’re inscribed with the unnerving words, “we surround you.”
Most of us, here in The Not Old Better audience are familiar with the role Dunkirk played pre-WW2, rescuing 300,000+ British soldiers, shot in full IMAX, and the new movie, which, by the is excellent in every way. I watched Dunkirk in IMAX 2D, and I will tell you the images are stunning, the story, again familiar, but excellent, and the sound with effects is beyond compare. I’ve never seen a movie like this!
But, there have been tons of reviews of Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan, and the images and audio spectacle, so I’ll leave extended reviews of Dunkirk to others.
But, this other movie, “Their Finest,” is equally remarkable, with some plot similarities to the film by Nolan, “Dunkirk.”
First off, I watched “Dunkirk” at the theater, by myself, and I watched “Their Finest” via itunes with Gretchen, my wife.
Whether it’s the all male Dunkirk cast, or the fact that it is primarily a war movie, or the nature of the visual and audio effects, Gretchen didn’t want to see Dunkirk.
Gretchen hadn’t heard of “Their Finest,” so I had to pass along word of mouth and other information to get her to bite, but after watching it together both of us agree, this is a fine, excellent movie, and one to see!
Whereas, “Dunkirk” the film, is drown out suffocating in parts, “Their Finest” breathes deeply, giving pause for rest and thoughtful, clever dialog, along with a brilliant story of a film studio serving the British war ministry, in 1940 London. This studio, it’s producers, writers, grips, and all personnel are in the film as propaganda business during the war, telling tales of British devotion to the cause. At one point the War Ministry official states, “we make movies that both entertain and improve morale.” This is important to Britain as the “blitz” each night forces Londoners to leave their homes, find shelter in the subway tubes, and bombs are dropping on the city.
Check out the interview above, as well as my review of “Their Finest.