Sweety Barret is a big man with a gentle nature, who is not exactly known for his brain power. He loses his job with a travelling circus and is stranded in an Irish village, where he gets caught up in a local vendetta.
A group of Irish college students are about to leave for the United States, where they've landed summer jobs on Long Island, New York. Working hard in the day and playing even harder at ... See full summary »
Writer-director William Boyd has strong family connections to World War I. His great uncle was wounded in the Somme, as was his grandfather at Paschendale. See more »
When Eddie looks out the loophole, no mans land is a clear green field. When the Winter and Beckwith do the raid, Beckwith claims there is a a ton of wire left. During the final attack, there is no wire. Also, due to the weeks of bombing it is likely that the ground would be a bit rough and muddy. See more »
On the 1st July 1916 - the first day of the Battle of Somme - 60,000 soldiers were killed or wounded, most of those in the first two hours of the attack. It remains the bloodiest day of slaughter in the history of the British Army.
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It's heart might be in the right place, but this tepid misfire looks like a bad TV schools production in every way. The 'exteriors' are obviously interior studio sets, and not very convincing ones. It's so badly lit that when the film finally goes outdoors to rip off the end of Gallipoli (which it does incredibly badly, like everything else) the change of film stock is so jarring it hurts.
The characters are childish stereotypes talking in unbelievable clichés and the film is frequently just plain wrong about details and attitudes of the average WW1 Tommy: politically correct, maybe, but historically it's a travesty (no Mr Boyd, officers DID go over the top: the highest percentage of casualties was officers, and even many generals died in battle).
But more than being badly directed, looking cheap, getting its facts wrong and going with every cliché Boyd can find, it's biggest sin is that it's just so bloody boring. Bad on every level.
WW1 was a terrible tragedy, and those who died in it deserve better than this terrible, terrible film.
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