Sam Mendes’ World War I Epic 1917 is Being Hailed as a Masterpiece
We knew co-writer/director Sam Mendes’ 1917 was going to be special (he wrote the script with Krysty Wilson-Cairns). He’s a director of extraordinary talent who surrounds himself with the same caliber of cast and crew. When we heard that his cinematographer was not only the legendary Roger Deakins but that the film had been conceived to essentially feel like a single continuous shot, we were even more excited.
The story follows two young British soldiers (George MacKay’s Schofield and Dean-Charles Chapman’s Blake) on their mission to deliver a message that could save 1,600 lives during World War I. In the process of trying to deliver the message, Deakins camera follows them across the killing fields of the war in a relentless, harrowing, yet intimate journey.
The Hollywood Reporter‘s Oscar prognosticator Scott Feinberg wrote that 1917 has crashed the Oscars race. This sentiment is being shared by critics far and wide, as well as fellow filmmakers.
Let’s take a brief stroll through some of these reactions:
‘1917’ is a thrilling, immersive, emotional journey into the heart of war. It’s exceptional on a technical level, yet frequently stunning in its simplicity. Sam Mendes & DP Roger Deakin (along with their crew) created a hypnotic cinema experience that is both riveting & moving. pic.twitter.com/qCrdquwdqC
— edgarwright (@edgarwright) November 17, 2019
1917 is audacious cinema executed by masters at the top of their craft. And two young actors who will go far: Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay. The single takes serve the story, as you search the space for the next rifle shot. Huge applause for the panel after.
— Anne Thompson (@akstanwyck) November 24, 2019
1917 is a masterful study of suspense, artistry, and timing. I’m in awe of how Sam Mendes and Roger Deakins pulled it off. Definite nominations for picture, director, cinematography, and design. Possibly score and sound editing too. A major wow. pic.twitter.com/XXBjJRrgnN
— Dave Karger (@davekarger) November 23, 2019
Yes #1917 lives up to the hype. haven’t seen a sweeps movie since expanded ballot. This is not solely a technical movie – it’s an actor’s movie and they will know it.
— Sasha Stone (@AwardsDaily) November 24, 2019
Aaannnndddd that’s your frontrunner!
‘1917’ is the best war film since SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. The cinematography of the year. The cinematography of the decade. Thomas Newman’s orchestral masterpiece. Sam Mendes gift to cinema…and his family. Every ounce is powerful.#1917Movie pic.twitter.com/EiwCTthAX3
— Clayton Davis (@AwardsCircuit) November 23, 2019
‘1917’ First Reactions: A ‘Tremendous Piece of Filmmaking’ and ‘the Best War Film’ Since ‘Saving Private Ryan’ https://t.co/dArk4C8X71 pic.twitter.com/37yQIRutG3
— IndieWire (@IndieWire) November 23, 2019
1917 review: Sam Mendes’s turns western front horror into a single-shot masterpiece https://t.co/XL7S9jdMh3
— Guardian Film (@guardianfilm) November 25, 2019
From the second #1917 starts to the final frame, it’s a total immersion into another time and place and it’s just a stunning movie on every level. Another 2019 film that absolutely blew me away. See this on the biggest screen you can. pic.twitter.com/JfgXnnoyRR
— Steven Weintraub (@colliderfrosty) November 24, 2019
#1917 is breathtaking. Thrilling, beautiful, horrific, and heartbreaking.
It’ll be a powerful awards player. Lives up to all the promises Sam Mendes made in this story.https://t.co/uNzKcBod24
— Anthony Breznican (@Breznican) November 23, 2019
1917 hits theaters on December 25, 2019.
Featured image: (center) George MacKay as Schofield in “1917,” co-written and directed by Sam Mendes. Photo Credit: François Duhamel / Universal Pictures and DreamWorks Pictures © 2019 Universal Pictures and Storyteller