Few movies can accurately be described as an “achievement.” I had a chance to see this in the theater but didn’t. My bad.
If I’d known Roger Deakins was involved I would have been there. He’s simply the best in the world, pure cinematic genius.
Turns out I have my own parallel with this project. The Scousers is my family’s World War Two story collection. While 1917 is Sam Mendes’ World War One story collection. There’s a deep feeling when recounting history, personal history passed down from your own family members. The stories are undeniably true (in my case) and powerfully gripping (in Mendes’ fictionalization).
The film has enough twists and turns to keep it thrilling, tries to avoid cliches, and the single-take aesthetic is like a dream. That is where the film shines. When there is no (visible) cutting, it’s like being there. It’s hard to look away or drift off into distraction. In that sense it’s a triumph, a true escape back into a slice of history.