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War Requiem (1989)

 -  Drama | War  -  6 January 1989 (UK)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 430 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 8 critic

A film with no spoken dialogue, just follows the music and lyrics of Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem, which include WWI soldier poet Wilfred Owen's poems reflecting the war's horrors. It ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
The Nurse
...
The Old Soldier
Patricia Hayes ...
Mother
Rohan McCullough ...
Enemy Mother
...
Abraham
...
The Unknown Soldier / Unknown Soldier
...
The German Soldier / German Soldier
...
Blinded Soldier
Claire Davenport ...
Charge Sister / Britannia
Spencer Leigh ...
Soldier 1
Milo Bell ...
Soldier 2
Richard Stirling ...
Soldier 3
Kim Kindersley ...
Soldier 4
Stuart Turton ...
Soldier 5
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Storyline

A film with no spoken dialogue, just follows the music and lyrics of Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem, which include WWI soldier poet Wilfred Owen's poems reflecting the war's horrors. It shows the story of an Englishman soldier (Wilfred Owen) and a nurse (his bride) during World War I. It also includes actual footage of contemporary wars (WWII, Vietnam, Angola, etc.) Written by Michel Rudoy <mdrc@hp9000a1.uam.mx>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

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Details

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Release Date:

6 January 1989 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Sota requiem  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(as spectral recording Dolby Stereo SR in selected theatres)

Color:

(archive footage)|
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Opening credits prologue: Wilfred Owen, the soldier poet whose words inspired Benjamin Britten's music, was killed in the last week of World War I at the age of 27. See more »

Soundtracks

War Requiem, Op. 66
Composed and conducted by Benjamin Britten
Based on poems by Wilfred Owen
Soloists: Galina Vishnevskaya, Peter Pears and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau with The Bach Choir, The London Symphony Orchestra Chorus and Highgate School Choir
Music played by The Melos Ensemble of London and The London Symphony Orchestra
Organist: Simon Preston
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User Reviews

 
The Artifice of Opera, The Failure of War
19 February 2014 | by (Palo Alto, CA, USA) – See all my reviews

Maybe it would have helped to have listened to the music first and more often. At times I would try to follow the poem/lyrics and just get lost.

Other times I would watch Tilda Swinton, and then go back and time her. Six whopping minutes of watching her run through her emotions. Sorry this was a breaking point for me... It reminded me that she does a sleep in a museum exhibit sometimes, and sort of made me dislike all actors.

Snowballs and pianos and soldiers, that was quite a scene, but it's small humanity gone wrong within the framework of war is lost in the bombast of the soundtrack for me.

I did find the use of the gruesome footage towards the finale had an interesting effect. Other footage was used throughout but typically cannons and shots from the trenches paled in comparison to some of those shots towards the end, that many viewers might have a difficult time with. I know I did, on two levels.

First it made me move from disliking actors to disliking humanity. War is failure but never more blatantly so than seeing the anguish and destruction of a single man, no matter what his uniform indicates. But again these images, like so many other lingering scenes, went on long enough to alter their affect from powerful to overpowering. Instead of feeling the loss of the individual, I felt like I was being thrust into a viewing of Faces of the Dead (or whatever that cult film is called which I have no desire to see).

The opera itself was torture enough for me. With time and exposure, I could perhaps appreciate it more, or become a fan of it. Not so with the carnage of war.


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