While I know a fair bit about World War I, my knowledge of Passchendaele is somewhat sketchy. All the war films I’ve seen dealing with World War I especially usually end up covering either the German or British sides. Seeing the Canadian point of view was an interesting change.
While this was not ‘the best’ film ever, it wasn’t awful. There was plenty of drama, action, romance…all the things you want in a film. War scenes done well. I just didn’t adore it as much as I do most other war movies.
Of course the film was sad, and it did come across as very moving. However, while there was the romantic element there was also the historical backbone (which always helps) and the fact that so many Canadian soldiers were killed. In the same way, Paul Gross (also playing the role of the main protagonist, Michael), used his grandfather’s experiences at Passchendaele as a jump off point so it was probably a very personal project too. The way propaganda on the home front is represented is very interesting and very artful at the same time.
Over all, a good film and not as bad as other reviews say unless you are extremely nitpicky.
MY RATING: **.5 / *****