Howdy ladies and gents, time for another quick review and today I’ll be giving you the first of 4 new reviews and the first film I’ll be talking about is Darkest Hour. So this is a film I heard a lot about last year especially in December because Gary Oldman’s performance and since it was recently released here in the UK I checked it out to see what the fuss was about.
The plot can be summed up as the following: “During the early days of World War II, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who must decide whether to negotiate with Hitler or fight on against incredible odds.” Now I have to admit upfront that my knowledge of historical events is pretty bad, especially when it comes to war-related events. Any information I had been lost when I left school over 10 years ago, so when I film like this comes along, I like the concept of learning of the past through film even if there are fictionalised elements implemented. With all that being said I found this film to be very interesting and captivating. I liked the tone and atmosphere, everything felt very dire, there’s a sense of confusion, anger, fear and though there’s a feeling of hopelessness, you can also see those who hold onto optimism. I liked exploring the different emotional mindsets of all the major characters and seeing how they dealt with the war overseas and the government scenarios. While I certainly enjoyed the story overall, there were some story beats that felt familiar for a dramatic biopic and at certain points, the pacing felt slow, though that may have been because I was really tired. The cast was good with some of my favourites being, Kristin Scott Thomas as Clementine Churchill, the wonderful Lily James as Elizabeth Layton, Ronald Pickup as Neville Chamberlain, Stephen Dillane as Edward Wood, and Ben Mendelsohn as George VI who hs a very interesting relationship with Churchill. But what really carries this film is the powerful performance from Gary Oldman, his screen presence is very intense and magnetic and besides a few instances, he steals every scene he’s in. Oldman really gets lost in the role and he’s unrecognisable besides through his voice in a few instances. Plus I love seeing Oldman being angry, he’s very intimidating, scary and he can do so much from just scowling to shouting or using physical actions. And the film score from Dario Marianelli was quite nice and certainly had some beautiful and powerful moments especially in the latter half of the film. In conclusion, Darkest Hour was a good film, but it was truly elevated by Gary Oldman’s performance.
So have you seen Darkest Hour and if so what did you think of it? Leave your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya in the next review, laters! 😀