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Powerfully directed and acted, '71 stays true to its fact-based origins while remaining as gripping as any solidly crafted action thriller.
All Critics (133)
| Top Critics (36)
| Fresh (127)
| Rotten (6)
'71 makes so much effort to be suspenseful that it doesn't have much time to get into nuance.
For those who know nothing of this bitter conflict, the movie is a good start.
The film doesn't take sides, but shows how conflict stirs the pot of human emotions and how quickly things can get out of control. And it shows that in war, no one is right.
Demange's feature debut miraculously distills the often Byzantine nature of the power politics behind The Troubles in a deeply intimate chamber piece about a single day in the life of a British soldier.
People died, but it's more than the bombs, bullets and bodies. The more fascinating damage was done to psyches and souls, and Demange, with '71, comes for yours.
The movie excites, but intelligently, without stoking blood lust or Old Testament revenge impulses.
There is a rich ethical murkiness that runs through this film on a near molecular level, and it strives to gets into the meat of what this kind of violent civil unrest and violence does to people.
A tight script, great action, and well-paced suspense throughout.
One of the sharpest British movies in some time.
The film touches on the politics that inform the action but not enough to provide much context.
This is one of the most extraordinary films I've seen this year, a knuckle-mashing, head-smashing, Tommy-bashing tour de force.
The thick accents and murky lighting will be an impediment to some viewers, but the overall effect will get to you regardless.
Once I passed the triteness of its opening and closing parts and some conveniences of the plot, I couldn't feel any other way but astound by the pace and gripping cinéma vérité style of newcomer Yann Demange. Paranoia, rage, discomfort or panic are some of the myriad of emotions dexteriously captured to give substance to a survival drama that in some other hands wouldn't be as effective or thrilling. The cast is also responsible for the achievement in realism and suspense.
With a visual approach that makes it resemble a documentary, this realistic thriller is highly gripping as a series of tense situations faced by a man caught in a political battle, but it is only a pity, though, that the film makes some odd narrative choices in the end.
A newbie soldier sent to Dublin during The Troubles gets separated from his unit while in hostile territory and must make his way back or die. What's interesting is the tension between those simply trying to survive versus the ruthlessness of policy makers. The movie fan me kept waiting for the soldier to be more proactive, ala John Wayne, and was constantly disappointed. And the ending is too predictable.
A remarkable and compelling tale of a British soldier left behind rebel lines in a 1970's Northern Ireland rife with corruption and treason. The impact of the violence and extremist views on future generations is artfully and smartly played out making "'71" an effective message flick. Good costumes, sets and very good, engrossing acting by up-and-comer Jack O'Connell make this period film well worth watching.
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