War Horse is not just a story, but more precisely a journey that approaches World War I with an outlook more so endearing. It’s a pity that Michael Morpugo’s novel written back in 1982 never came to limelight until now, however much was known to those theater enthusiasts who might have glanced upon the adopted theatrical version of the book, run by National Theater in London since 2007, featuring puppets, as it went on to arrest universal acclaim. Apart from the book, designated as a Steven Spielberg‘s film, the movie flares with well fabricated warfare. It certainly is among the best movies of 2011 and all those who have already listed the best of 2011, need append.
I will admit that the movie starts off slow, catering heavily to the bond enjoyed by Albert, played by Jeremy Irvine, and his horse, Joey, but indeed is the basis for all that shall follow, for be it the learned communication, or the training, or the attachment, all counts in all that is unveiled. The story has multiple faces, reflecting promptly the state of war, dwindling soldiers, promise of reunion, instances of compassion, and effect of war, not only on the people but also on an animal such as a horse. One such horse, was Joey, who for the poverty of his owner, was traded to a military personnel and thus began his journey in a world at war. It might seem that the movie essentially focuses on the horse and his master, somehow purporting hope even though depicting those troubled times, as it may appear in the trailer, but though it is true, the movie is much more forward, for the horse acts more like a mascot leading the war itself. As Joey moves, so advances the story and the horse merely being a part of the play, fills it with characters each having a story of their own, each reflecting to some extent the various strata that were affected by this nuisance called war, be it the soldiers, or a family owning a farm, or a little girl wishing a ride.
The direction by Steven Spielberg is befitting, and as is expected of a maker of “Saving Private Ryan” the horrid historic conflict is well handled. The portrayal of a British village and importance of horses in those times, regarded as an aid in war, is also contemplated. The emotional score and breathtaking cinematography push it way ahead, talking the viewer into an unparalleled ride. Though the scenes of war do not reinforce my belief, but the emotional turmoil does make it an exceptional family movie, however don’t mind that the lead character is an animal. Apart from the humans in the movie, Joey, as magnificent and beautiful it was, more prodigious was its act, and if there were an Oscar for best animal, it would be the top contender.
Why you should not miss this movie?
- A Steven Spielberg film
- If you wish to see why animal is a misfit at war, toyed with guns
- If you wish to see what happened at NO MAN’S LAND, human nature at it’s best
- Revisit World War I, for few are on WWI, most are on WWII (though it’s not a war movie)
- Last one’s a surprise!
I loved this historic drama , and recommend it to anyone who can stand a bit of warfare.
Listen to the author of “War Horse” commenting on the Film. He says, “People must remember the background.” I say, “True that!”