Dartmoor,1914: To his wife's dismay farmer Narracott buys a thoroughbred horse rather than a plough animal, but when his teenaged son Albert trains the horse and calls him Joey, the two becoming inseparable. When his harvest fails, the farmer has to sell Joey to the British cavalry and he is shipped to France where, after a disastrous offensive he is captured by the Germans and changes hands twice more before he is found, caught in the barbed wire in No Man's Land four years later and freed. He is returned behind British lines where Albert, now a private, has been temporarily blinded by gas, but still recognizes his beloved Joey. However, as the Armistice is declared Joey is set to be auctioned off. After all they have been through will Albert and Joey return home together? Written by
don @ minifie-1
First horse movie to be nominated for the Best Picture Academy Award Oscar in eight years. Seabiscuit (2003) was the last. See more »
When the cavalry charge through the grass towards the Germans you can see they are running in trails previously made. When they burst into the open you can see how the grass has been flattened by a previous charge. See more »
Very well made. A modern film reminiscent of the classics.
It is well understood from the first few scenes that the typical cliché of both war films and animal dramas will stain Spielberg's canvas, yet the film pushes forward, earning well-deserved praise. Quite a few scenes are captivating to say the least; as is the scene with the horse, Joey, forging through heavily barb-wired no man's land.
'War Horse' surely reminisces the older WW1 films, and epic war films in general, such as Lawrence of Arabia, that drag on forever, yet do not fail to keep you enthralled with their stunning visuals and top-notch acting. Jeremy Irvine's performance was acceptable for an actor fairly new to the game, as were the performances of the gamut of child actors in the film, but honorable mentions must go to Emily Watson, Niels Arestrup, and Peter Mullan. The production did a wonderful job to give the horse Joey a deeper personified image, as if he were an actor. The same goes for the other horses in the film, who seem to converse amongst each other and reveal a chemistry shared between animal and animal, as well as animal and man. A wonderful job on the whole. Certainly Spielberg's finest work in recent months (yes, I don't think cowboys and aliens should ever mix).
For what its worth, this picture will move you deeply, as it has done to many. 'War Horse' inspires anti-war sentiments, as Joey's endeavors help him sympathize with men on both sides of the trenches, and ultimately reminds us of the beauty of Earths beasts. Each one has its own character that strikes a chord with the audience, and this is undeniable.
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