Monday, December 26, 2011
Movie Review: "War Horse"
How does war affect individuals? Civilians caught in the midst of infantry, soldiers embroiled in battle, and the horses that lead the Calvary? War Horse is the story of a horse named Joey, sold into the British Army at the start of World War I. What director Steven Spielberg does is weave a tapestry of war from Joey's point-of-view.
Throughout the flick, Joey changes masters multiple times due to the horrors and atrocities of war, the only constant in all of these scenes is Joey, and Spielberg manages to convey what Joey is thinking or feeling through the camera movement and juxtaposition of shots. Through breathtaking scope, solid acting from the rounded cast of character actors, and the exquisitely realized, highly kinetic action sequences that is Spielberg's forte, War Horse gallops across the screen with verve.
Where the flick works best is the vignette's of each person that Joey deals with across his journey: from the British boy who raised him, to the British Calvary, to the German Army, all the way to a French farm girl and her grandfather. War Horse is an examination of war and how compassion survives within toughest times. The compassion that the individuals who meet Joey show for the horse, often saving his life, to the compassion between the individuals that Joey meets and how they feel for one another. Ultimately, war is ugly business that those involved are not fighting for their country's victory, but to keep themselves alive as well as those that they love, shown by two German brothers who desert the German Army to ensure that they stay together.
Simply put, War Horse is compassion. Throughout all of mankind, one of the most overwhelming bonds that exists is the love of a pet, a dog, a cat, or even a horse. People remember them, love them, treat them as if they're human, and will fight to ensure their safety. Even years later, they hold those animals in their hearts, and are united with others due to compassion that all share for the animals that they once loved or still love.
I give War Horse an A+!