Tag: Dunkirk

“Darkest Hour,” the movie: an interview with The Australian

“Darkest Hour,” the movie: an interview with The Australian

For The Australian …

Troy Bram­ston of The Aus­tralian news­pa­per had per­ti­nent ques­tions about the new movie Dark­est Hour, star­ring Gary Old­man as Win­ston Churchill. With the thought that Troy’s queries might be of inter­est, I append the text of the inter­view.

The Aus­tralian : Of all the things Win­ston Churchill is pur­port­ed to have said and done, the myths and mis­con­cep­tions, which are the most preva­lent and frus­trat­ing for schol­ars? None of these appear in the film, but there are three things that ran­kle: 1) The lies—that he was anx­ious to use poi­son gas; that he fire­bombed Dres­den in revenge for Coven­try; that he exac­er­bat­ed the Ben­gal famine, etc.…

Read More Read More

Is the Movie “Dunkirk” Dumbed Down?

Is the Movie “Dunkirk” Dumbed Down?

Reviews of Christo­pher Nolan’s new film on Dunkirk, which take quite oppo­site points of view.

Dunkirk without Context

Dorothy Rabi­nowitz, in The Wall Street Jour­nal, pro­claims “the dumb­ing down of Dunkirk.” Mr. Nolan, she writes:

…con­sid­ers Dunkirk “a uni­ver­sal story…about com­mu­nal hero­ism.” Which explains why this is—despite its impres­sive cin­e­matog­ra­phy, its mov­ing por­trait of suf­fer­ing troops and their rescuers—a Dunkirk flat­tened out, dis­con­nect­ed from the spir­it of its time, from any sense even of the par­tic­u­lar mighty ene­my with which Eng­land was at war.

When an event in his­to­ry has become, in the mind of a writer, “uni­ver­sal” it’s a tip-off.…

Read More Read More

Churchill, Taxes, the War and the Vote

Churchill, Taxes, the War and the Vote

Broad­cast­ing, 1940 (BBC)

Writ­ing in The Inde­pen­dent on April 13th Dominic Law­son, son of Mar­garet Thatcher’s Chan­cel­lor of the Exche­quer, says that “the pub­lic want hon­esty, but not when it comes to their tax­es.” The vot­ers, Law­son argues force­ful­ly, will nev­er undo the gov­ern­ment enti­tle­ments that are bank­rupt­ing mod­ern democ­ra­cies. It is ludi­crous, he adds, for British Con­ser­v­a­tives to deplore the nation­al debt, and then “to pro­pose mea­sures which would do noth­ing to reduce it, but actu­al­ly increase it….as if Win­ston Churchill had declared, ‘I have noth­ing to offer but blood, toil, tears, sweat and tax cuts.’”

My inter­est was piqued when Mr.…

Read More Read More