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Felicity Warner / HCM
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Nottingham chapter.

It is safe to say that, for a history fan, or even just an Englishman in general, director Sam Mendes’ new film 1917 will be a hit; a film that manages to capture the essence of everyday life of the soldiers who fought in World War I. Well, it was definitely a hit with me, something that, although I’m not sure should have been nominated for 10 Oscars this year, deserved all the critical acclaim it received, and is definitely worth watching. 

Like every newly released film about the world wars in recent years (examples being the golden year for war films: 2017, the biopic Darkest Hour (Gary Oldman’s Oscar winning portrayal of Winston Churchill), Christopher Nolan’ s Dunkirk and Saul Dibb’s Journey’s End) 1917 is loaded with an all-star cast, making it even more fulfilling to see. What I did like, however, was that its lead actor (George MacKay, 27) was not one of these well- known Hollywood stars. For me, this made the story all the more plausible. 

What we saw mainly was the journey that one soldier took to deliver a message across England from one army base to another, and rooting for him to be successful in his mission as he did. Although basic in story line, with most of the action consisting of running across battlegrounds while trying to stay alive (as of course was the case), Mendes was successful in his focus to tell individual stories – to show the individual lives that these soldiers had, rather than just of men who all collectively and equally fought to save their countries. 

What particularly engaged the audience emotionally were the bonds that these men also had with each other. It was a story that emphasised the overall importance of, and need to accept, whoever the other one was, for this was essential to the maintenance of overall group morale – to find positivity wherever it could be found in a time of tragedy. We were able to see this intention early on in the beginning, and called into responding with sympathy as we did. 

With cameos made by stars Colin Firth, Benedict Cumberbatch, Richard Madden, Andrew Scott and Mark Strong, 1917 tells the important story of a moment in history that can never be forgotten, but in a more specific and personalised form. If you know you’re someone who cries at films that get emotional and tug at your heart strings, this is definitely a film where your tissues should be to hand.


Olivia is a third year English with Hispanic Studies student at the University of Nottingham. She enjoys playing team sports and doing anything performance related: up for going to the karaoke bar all day every day. Her ambition is to travel the world as much as she can. She is a reviewer for HerCampus Nottingham magazine.