Tuesday, January 10, 2012

War Horse (4)


A boy raises a magnificent horse and they share a bond that nothing can break, not even a war.

I was in the exact frame of mind to go see this film. I wanted action but wasn't looking for shaky explosion scenes or car chases with overly loud sound effects. I wanted drama, I wanted to think and feel, and maybe cry a little.

War Horse gave me everything I wanted with a little more passion.

Let me put it this way: this movie made me and an entire audience cry over a horse. An animal. Spielberg made people legitimately care for an animal they never met before and who ultimately doesn't exist. At one point I found myself on the edge of tears, covering my mouth with my hands, with all the muscles in my body stiff with stress. I caught myself and went "Hang on, am I over reacting?". When I took a moment to look around me I noticed the 18 year old boys in front of me in the exact same pose and a line of 60+'ers in tears. Tell me this isn't a successful film.

I've never had to review a horse before. haha. He was beautiful though and they did a good job of picking the horse. It might be weird to say but while it was an amazing beast it didn't look overly special when next to another horse. That's really all I can say about that.

The kid reminded me of Ethan Hawke inWhite Fang, except far more whiny. I've heard that people are laughing at Jeremy Irvine over his performance and I sort of see why but I don't really have any thing to complain about. He was a bit whiny but I'm pretty sure that was a directorial suggestion. I liked that I hadn't seen the kids face before though, it was nice not having Channing Tatum up there looking all...Tatum.

Spielberg does war so well. I thought he did a good job of showing WWI and to be honest it was nice that it wasn't another WWII flick. I thought some of the scenes were breathtaking or horrifying or emotional for reasons that I cannot explain. The first half of this movie is not overly exciting but the rest makes up for it. Except the very ending...that was the only time I thought they were digging for emotions.

I cried. I laughed. I wondered where the story was going and then I couldn't look away. I liked it.

Bonus: Emily Watson.

Ps - I cannot wait to see this on the stage.


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