Darkest Hour

We went to see “Darkest Hour” at a nearby theater. We found it very enjoyable. It was a very cerebral movie about Churchill’s conflict over whether or not to negotiate with Hitler prior to Britain’s entry into the war. There was not a lot of “action” in the traditional sense, but the conflicts experienced by Churchill, both internal and external came through loud and clear. Gary Oldman, the actor who played Churchill was outstanding, and channeled Churchill in an astounding fashion. The flawed nature of one of the greatest leaders in world history, was evident, but not overplayed.

While I thoroughly enjoyed this movie, I had three issues. The first involved the king, who initially did not support Churchill, but gave him his support toward the end of the movie. It was not clear to me how this conversion process took place, and it seemed too sudden. My second issue involved the scene on the London tube, at which Churchill cemented his final political position by interacting with some of the people of London. That seemed just too cute to me, but it was a very well-done scene. I was very curious if this scene was based on reality or of it was a bit of poetic license. In any case, it was a really good scene. My final issue with the movie was that although I felt Mr. Oldman’s renditions of Churchill’s speeches were academy-award level, I felt that Churchill’s speeches, heard on audio, in the context that most people in the world heard them, were more stirring. Mr. Oldman’s speeches were pretty close, however, and trying to equal one of the best speeches in world history is a formidable challenge.

All in all, this was great entertainment, with a healthy dose of learning thrown into the mix. I loved it.

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