Journey's End is set in northern France in March 1918 as C Company, led by Captain Stanhope (Sam Claflin), arrives to take its turn in the front line. Told that a German offensive is imminent, Stanhope drowns his fears in whisky while the other officers (Paul Bettany, Tom Sturridge and Stephen Graham) and their cook (Toby Jones') attempt to distract themselves in their dugout with talk of food and life before the war. They are joined in the trenches by Raleigh (Asa Butterfield), a new young officer fresh out of training who is excited about his first real posting and the chance to serve under his schoolboy hero Stanhope. Raleigh's naive enthusiasm contrasts with the other men's mounting fear as the tension rises and the attack draws ever closer.
Well executed film that portrays the absolute futility of the first world war and the complete stupidity of the aristocratic prats "in charge". Not an easy watch, or particularly entertaining, a worthwhile watch nonetheless.
5 out of 5 members found this review helpful.
SoSo Adaption of a Great Play
- Journey's End review by KW
As a fan of the original play I am curious as to how film makers go about converting it to a film. In this instance it was OK but felt that the supporting cast were the real stars. Visually to look at, it was first rate and the supporting cast were exceptional and special credit must go to Toby Jones, but for me the problem was that I could connect with Sam Claflin characterisation of the officer commanding the unit and this left me at times, wandering away from it.
This film is good in the way that it differentiates itself from the usual war films, which are full of and mainly concentrate on the action and gory side of battles in the field. This film instead concentrates all its efforts on the mental side of war and how the fatigue, panic and fear of the enemy and the unknown takes its toll on those involved.
In that sense the film creates a great atmosphere and at times an almost palpable feeling of tension to make you appreciate what those soldiers must have been feeling and going through.
That said though, the addition of a bit more action would have still seen the film maintain its core aim but at the same time giving enough to keep your full and undivided attention.
To that end this film fell short for me and was watchable but won’t stick in the memory for long.
0 out of 1 members found this review helpful.
An exceptional First World War film
- Journey's End review by DR
This is a magnificent film, documenting the destruction of personality, the following of duty when fear and nerves have reached a breaking point in the trenches.
It does not follow the novel very closely, or the stage play, and is seen in its own right. The plot it is virtually the same as in the Royal Flying Corps drama "Aces High".