Darkest Hour

By Angie Raphael

2.5 stars

Part of me feels like I should just give up on watching any film directed by Joe Wright. Almost everything he does, with the exception of Hanna and perhaps to a lesser extent Pan, feels tedious. He even ruined my beloved Pride and Prejudice! His self-indulgence is again evident in Darkest Hour, which chronicles the decisions British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman) made during World War Two regarding Adolf Hitler's push through Europe and also touching on battles such as Dunkirk, which was already made famous on screen by the beautiful Christopher Nolan film earlier this year. The problem with Darkest Hour is that screenwriter Anthony McCarten reveals nothing new or interesting about Churchill, so even casual history fans will probably be bored. That being said, Oldman does give an exceptional performance. He is unrecognisable and embodies Churchill's demeanour. Ben Mendelsohn is also excellent as King George and it would have been great to see more of him. To Wright's credit, the film also has some great cinematography and use of lighting. Darkest Hour is not terrible, it is just bland and the type of film that may be popular with Oscar voters who are out of touch with the public actually paying to go to the cinema.