The extraordinary true story of Oliver Woodward. It's 1916 and Woodward must tear himself from his new young love to go to the mud and carnage of the Western Front. Deep beneath the German ... See full summary »
Steve Le Marquand
Set in northern Australia before World War II, an English aristocrat who inherits a sprawling ranch reluctantly pacts with a stock-man in order to protect her new property from a takeover plot. As the pair drive 2,000 head of cattle over unforgiving landscape, they experience the bombing of Darwin, Australia, by Japanese forces firsthand.
In May 1944, a group of French servicewomen and resistance fighters are enlisted into the British Special Operations Executive commando group under the command of Louise Desfontaines and ... See full summary »
Set in 1930s Shanghai, where a blind American diplomat develops a curious relationship with a young Russian refugee who works odd -- and sometimes illicit -- jobs to support members of her dead husband's aristocratic family.
Sergeant Michael Dunne fights in the 10th Battalion, AKA The "Fighting Tenth" with the 1st Canadian Division and participated in all major Canadian battles of the war, and set the record for highest number of individual bravery awards for a single battle. Written by
Paul Gross wrote and directed this film, and it's closing song "After the War". Michael Dunne was his grandfather, a WW One vet, who once heartbreakingly confessed to a young Gross about bayoneting the young lad in the forehead. Gross later said on Dunne's deathbed he was muttering for forgiveness and he was the only one who knew what was being talked about. See more »
The position of the German's bayonet over Dunne's chest during the scuffle. See more »
Besides being an admitted movie addict, I'm also a retired professional soldier and a combat veteran who's served in multiple theaters of conflict.
I usually find myself quietly disappointed with war movies in general, and their vain, highly stylized, cliché-laden attempts to realistically portray infantry warfare, and high-intensity warfare's effects on soldiers. Film-makers invariably seem to fall far short in their attempts to capture the essence of what war can be (or was) like, and what exposure to it can do to the people involved, both mentally and physically.
To his great credit, I think that in Passchendaele Paul Gross seems to have actually managed to capture a reasonably authentic glimpse into both the nature of such hellish environments and the men caught up in them.
The acting was superb. The performances were so convincing that the notion that I was just sitting watching a movie didn't even occur to me until the credits began to roll by, I was so totally engrossed.
This film was easily one of the best that I've seen in quite some time.
I'll definitely be keeping my eyes open for any future films by Paul Gross. Passchendaele stands as an extremely impressive testimonial to his obvious talents.
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