Christopher Nolan's (the director from The Dark Knight and Inception) latest film, Dunkirk, is stunning. Set in 1940, it recounts the events of the evacuation of 360,000 men from the beach of Dunkirk. The mass evacuation is shown from three different points of view over three different time-frames, which all come together in the last minutes of the film. These points of views include the soldiers on the beach over one week, the civilians on the water over one day and the pilots in the air over one hour.
The film itself has little dialogue or background information about the characters, which some people might find confusing, but the director has a good reason - Nolan made it this way because he didn't want it to be about heroism or one person, instead he wanted it to be about the 360,000 men stranded on the beach and the civilians who aided in their rescue. This film is about telling a story of survival that is bigger than any one person.
Furthermore, it shows the various emotions that many of the men felt during this 8-day long evacuation. However, what I did not expect was the reaction of a soldier when he was coming home; he was terrified that people were going to spit on him in the street and hate him for retreating. It was an emotion I hadn't thought they would feel, and this display of emotions made the film feel like it gave justice to the story.
Although, such a great film does have it critics and there is criticism that the movie focuses too much on the action, and doesn't show the emotions of the people back at home or the Allied leaders. However, I believe that Nolan has made the right choice here. By staying in the action, the tension remains and the audience isn't given the respite from the action that would come with including the people back home and the leaders.
All in all, the film is beautifully shot and while it isn't your typical war film concerned with the bloody aspect of combat, it does show the other side of war - the side in which people are just trying to survive.