8.6/10
86,333
668 user 350 critic

Dunkirk (2017)

PG-13 | | Action, Drama, History | 21 July 2017 (USA)
Trailer
0:31 | Trailer

Get Showtimes & Tickets

In 43 theaters near Ashburn VA US [change]

Allied soldiers from Belgium, the British Empire and France are surrounded by the German army and evacuated during a fierce battle in World War II.

Director:

Reviews
Popularity
1 ( 3)

10 Surprising Things to Know About 'Dunkirk'

Did you know that Dunkirk is the first movie by Christopher Nolan based on historical events? Check out 10 things you might not know about Dunkirk.

See the entire list

Top Rated Movies #46 | 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

After the apes suffer unimaginable losses, Caesar wrestles with his darker instincts and begins his own mythic quest to avenge his kind.

Director: Matt Reeves
Stars: Andy Serkis, Woody Harrelson, Steve Zahn
Baby Driver (2017)
Action | Crime | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

After being coerced into working for a crime boss, a young getaway driver finds himself taking part in a heist doomed to fail.

Director: Edgar Wright
Stars: Ansel Elgort, Jon Bernthal, Jon Hamm
Interstellar (2014)
Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A team of explorers travel through a wormhole in space in an attempt to ensure humanity's survival.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9/10 X  

When the menace known as the Joker emerges from his mysterious past, he wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham, the Dark Knight must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart
Inception (2010)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

A thief, who steals corporate secrets through use of dream-sharing technology, is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a CEO.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Peter Parker, with the help of his mentor Tony Stark, tries to balance his life as an ordinary high school student in New York City while fighting crime as his superhero alter ego Spider-Man when a new threat emerges.

Director: Jon Watts
Stars: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr.
The Prestige (2006)
Drama | Mystery | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Two stage magicians engage in competitive one-upmanship in an attempt to create the ultimate stage illusion.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Eight years after the Joker's reign of anarchy, the Dark Knight, with the help of the enigmatic Selina, is forced from his exile to save Gotham City, now on the edge of total annihilation, from the brutal guerrilla terrorist Bane.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway
Insomnia (2002)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two Los Angeles homicide detectives are dispatched to a northern town where the sun doesn't set to investigate the methodical murder of a local teen.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Al Pacino, Robin Williams, Hilary Swank
Following (1998)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A young writer who follows strangers for material meets a thief who takes him under his wing.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Jeremy Theobald, Alex Haw, Lucy Russell
Batman Begins (2005)
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

After training with his mentor, Batman begins his fight to free crime-ridden Gotham City from the corruption that Scarecrow and the League of Shadows have cast upon it.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Ken Watanabe
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
French Soldier
...
Lee Armstrong ...
Grenadier
...
Irate Soldier
...
...
...
Peter
...
...
Luke Thompson ...
Warrant Officer
Michel Biel ...
French Soldier 2
Constantin Balsan ...
French Soldier 3
...
Petty Officer
...
Soldier
Edit

Storyline

Evacuation of Allied soldiers from Belgium, the British Empire, and France, who were cut off and surrounded by the German army from the beaches and harbor of Dunkirk, France, between May 26- June 04, 1940, during Battle of France in World War II. Written by Harvey

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The event that shaped our world. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense war experience and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

| | |

Language:

| |

Release Date:

21 July 2017 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bodega Bay  »

Box Office

Budget:

$100,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$50,500,000 (USA) (21 July 2017)

Gross:

$50,500,000 (USA) (21 July 2017)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (DTS: X)| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.43 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Caine has an unseen and uncredited role as a British Spitfire pilot in the film. He previously portrayed a Spitfire pilot in "Battle of Britain" (1969). See more »

Goofs

Houses from the eighties behind the sand dune, apartments from the sixties on front of the sea at the beginning of the film. A concrete bench on the beach. See more »

Quotes

[from trailer]
Commander Bolton: You can practically see it from here.
Captain Winnant: What?
Commander Bolton: Home.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits, except for the film's title. See more »


Soundtracks

Variation 15 (Dunkirk)
by Benjamin Wallfisch
Produced by Hans Zimmer
Based on a theme by Edward Elgar
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A technical masterpiece that is nearly devoid of palpable emotion and compelling characters.

Might as well get right to it, then. At the risk of sounding like a contrarian, I did not love this film. Do I love elements of this? Yes. Is this a 5-star masterpiece? Unfortunately, no.

The cinematography here at least, is masterful. Director Christopher Nolan has, without a doubt, reached the pinnacle of on-screen spectacle here. The feats of practical effects in this film are breathtaking. The casting of nearly 6,000 extras, authentic WWII vehicles, and shooting on location in Dunkirk, France contribute to a great sense of scale here. There is ongoing trend of action films in recent years of relying on CGI, and thankfully Nolan bucks that trend.

Similar to War for the Planet of the Apes, much of the film plays out without much dialogue, leaning on just the score and sound design in most scenes. It almost goes without saying that Hans Zimmer delivers with another incredible score. The sound design is also extremely well crafted, which, paired with Nolan's great work behind the camera, truly transports you to the Battle of Dunkirk. The wailing of planes passing above, the drone of gunfire, and the roar of explosions all contribute to the complete immersion into the world these characters are trapped in. This results in some of the most immersive wartime action scenes since Saving Private Ryan.

This film has and will continue to be compared to World War II classic Saving Private Ryan. Both films are beautifully filmed WWII period pieces with casts that deliver great performances. The similarities end there. Whereas Saving Private Ryan was engrossing as a narrative due to it's characters with depth and arcs, Dunkirk instead leans on it's subject matter and spectacle.

And while the subject matter of Dunkirk is fascinating, as a film it lacks emotional firepower due to the absence of a strongly written protagonist. This is strangely uncharacteristic of a director of Nolan's caliber, especially when you recall the complex character work in his most acclaimed films: The Dark Knight, Memento, and The Prestige. Instead of focusing on a single character or single group of characters, the focus is spread across three protagonists in completely different situations. Showing the Dunkirk Evacuation through the three different perspectives of those on the beach, the sea, and the air is only an interesting proposition on paper. The narrative, due to this writing choice, is spread far too thin, with few characters getting enough screen time to develop even the mildest emotional connection.

While the characters in this film aren't written to even remotely be compelling, the great work from this cast is not to be overlooked. Harry Styles, known for being a member of English boy band One Direction, is surprisingly excellent here in his acting debut. Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh, and Fionn Whitehead also all give standout performances despite the limited screen time they are given.

I should love this film. Historical drama? WWII setting? My favorite director Christopher Nolan? Amazing cinematography? Superb performances from an ensemble cast? All of these elements made me sure I would love this going in. But, Dunkirk's lack of emotional connection severely detracts from the awe-inspiring scope and technical prowess displayed.

If I reviewed based on visuals alone, this is a slam-dunk, walk-off home run of a 5-star film. While a focus on grandeur and situation over character depth and emotion may work for some (it obviously worked for 98% of critics on Rotten Tomatoes), it did not work for this critic.

This is without a doubt a cinematic achievement, but without an emotional core, it's impossible for this film not to feel cold and empty. Despite being a technical masterpiece, this is Christopher Nolan's most disappointing film yet.


307 of 499 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?