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War Requiem (film)

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Director  Derek Jarman
Music director  Benjamin Britten
Duration  
Country  United Kingdom
6.6/10 IMDb

Genre  Drama, War
Story by  Wilfred Owen
Writer  Derek Jarman
Language  English
War Requiem (film) movie poster
Release date  6 January 1989
Cast  Nathaniel Parker (Wilfred Owen), Tilda Swinton (The Nurse), Laurence Olivier (The Old Soldier), Patricia Hayes (Mother), Rohan McCullough (Enemy Mother), Nigel Terry (Abraham)
Similar movies  The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Captain America: Civil War, Fury, Closing the Ring, The Hunting Party

This experimental film synthesizes the poetry of Wilfred Owen, wordless reenactments of events from Owens life, stock footage of 20th-century wars and music by composer Benjamin Britten. During World War I, British soldier Owen (Nathaniel Parker) is mortified by the examples of cruelty that surround him in the trenches. He combats these terrifying images by maintaining hope in his love for an army nurse (Tilda Swinton). But he also begins to accept his fate as another battlefield sacrifice.

Contents

War Requiem is a 1989 film adaptation of Benjamin Brittens musical piece of the same name.

It was shot in 1988 by the British film director Derek Jarman with the 1963 recording as the soundtrack, produced by Don Boyd and financed by the BBC. Decca Records required that the 1963 recording be heard on its own, with no overlaid soundtrack or other sound effects. The film featured Nathaniel Parker as Wilfred Owen, and Laurence Olivier in his last acting appearance in any medium before his death in July 1989. The film is structured as the reminiscences of Oliviers character, the Old Soldier in a wheelchair, and Olivier recites "Strange Meeting" in the films prologue.

A film with no spoken dialogue, just follows the music and lyrics of Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem, which include WWI soldier poet Wilfred Owen's poems reflecting the war's horrors. It shows the story of an Englishman soldier (Wilfred Owen) and a nurse (his bride) during World War I. It also includes actual footage of contemporary wars (WWII, Vietnam, Angola, etc.)

Cast

  • Laurence Olivier (Old Soldier)
  • Nathaniel Parker (Wilfred Owen)
  • Tilda Swinton (Nurse)
  • Sean Bean (German Soldier)
  • Nigel Terry (Abraham)
  • Patricia Hayes (Mother)
  • Owen Teale (Unknown Soldier)
  • Jodie Graber (Young boy soldier)
  • Spencer Leigh (Soldier 1)
  • Filming

    Shooting for the film took place at Darenth Park Hospital in Kent, beginning 17 October 1988 and lasting for 18 days. It was released on the following dates in English-speaking countries:

  • United Kingdom, 6 January 1989
  • Canada, 12 September 1989
  • United States, 26 January 1990.
  • Video

    The film was released on VHS and Laserdisc in 1990, but because of its limited release, copies are quite rare. A US (Region 1/NTSC) DVD is available from Kino International. The film has been released on UK Region 2 DVD featuring a Making of War Requiem documentary and interviews with Swinton, Parker and Don Boyd (who also provides an audio commentary). A DVD has also been released in Japan.

    References

    War Requiem (film) Wikipedia
    War Requiem (film) IMDb War Requiem (film) themoviedb.org


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