Testament Of Youth


Testament Of Youth

Critics Consensus

Testament of Youth is well-acted and beautifully filmed, adding up to an enriching if not adventurous experience for fans of British period dramas.



Total Count: 124


Audience Score

User Ratings: 9,097
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Movie Info

Testament of Youth is a powerful story of love, war and remembrance, based on the First World War memoir by Vera Brittain, which has become the classic testimony of that war from a woman's point of view. A searing journey from youthful hopes and dreams to the edge of despair and back again, it's a film about young love, the futility of war and how to make sense of the darkest times.(C) Sony Classics

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Alicia Vikander
as Vera Brittain
Kit Harington
as Roland Leighton
Dominic West
as Mr. Brittain
Emily Watson
as Mrs. Brittain
Taron Egerton
as Edward Brittain
Colin Morgan
as Victor Richardson
Miranda Richardson
as Miss Lorimer
Emily Bevan
as Mrs. Britain
Anna Chancellor
as Mrs. Leighton
Jonathan Bailey
as Geoffrey Thurlow
Alexandra Roach
as Winifred Holtby
Joanna Scanlan
as Aunt Belle
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Critic Reviews for Testament Of Youth

All Critics (124) | Top Critics (35)

Audience Reviews for Testament Of Youth

  • Apr 16, 2018
    It's not an overly similar movie, but as I've recently watched Atonement, Testament of Youth gave me that same sort of touchingly effective drama with a backdrop of a world war. Obviously, the two are very differently told films. But they proved to each impress in a similar way. For Testament of Youth, this was Alicia Vikander and Kit Harrington's coming out party, at least in the film world. The latter is famous for his turn in that one certain HBO show while Vikander hadn't really done anything of notoriety before this, and she is absolutely the best part about this film. Whether it be as the tomb raiding Lara Croft, the grieving Isabel Graysmark, or the curious Ava, she is brilliant in anything she does. In fact, she's quickly becoming one of my favorite actresses to watch, merely for the sheer charisma she brings with every role. And as much as I want to commend Harrington, Taron Egerton, Dominic West (who ironically also plays her father in Tomb Raider), Colin Morgan, Hayley Atwell, and Emily Watson, no one comes close to Vikander's performance here. If this film didn't get lost in her year of Danish Girl & Ex Machina, perhaps she could have been an awards contender for this film. In fact, this may be my favorite performance of hers. Can I be anymore genuine about her utterly genuine turn? 9.0/10
    Thomas D Super Reviewer
  • Feb 03, 2016
    Based on the acclaimed novel, Testament of Youth is a provocative war drama that follows the experiences of Vera Brittain. After the breakout of World War I both her boyfriend and her brother enlist in England's army, and before long Vera herself feels the call to serve and drops out of university in order to be a voluntary nurse as part of England's war effort. Alicia Vikander gives an excellent performance that's quite impassioned, really capturing the character's struggles. The sets and costumes are also remarkably well-done, giving an authentic look and feel for the time period. However, there are some awkwardly inserted poetry scenes that don't really flow with the realistic tone of the film. And, the message is rather understated for such an influential novel. Yet Testament of Youth is a powerful film, and does an excellent job at portraying the unglamorous realities of war.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Jul 06, 2015
    By necessity of source the film is structurally a little episodic, but otherwise I can't find fault in this powerful, stirring true story. The committed performances of Kit Harington and especially lead Alicia Vikander are perfect. A truly underrated film.
    Daniel P Super Reviewer
  • May 11, 2015
    Testament of Youth This is a perfectly made account of World War I, seen through the eyes of a beautiful, intelligent and educated young, middle class woman, Vera Brittain, who wrote a best-selling book about her experiences. It has never gone out of print. The quality of the production is first-class, with detailed interiors, street scenes and costumes. The English landscapes are breathtaking. Then, the scenes of battlefields and field hospitals are graphic and bloody. These are well judged, without resorting to gratuitous violence or gore for entertainment's sake. The acting, direction and editing are uniformly very good. Once again, the wonderful Emily Watson, in the role of the mother, provides key turning points in the story, within just seconds of footage. Vikander plays Vera with a pleasing neutrality, that throws the action and the characters of the story up into relief. We feel acutely the suffering of the wounded and dying and those who weep for them. Vera's speech against the cycle of killing and revenge is powerful. This is the kind of film that all young people should see. Do them credit; they could appreciate that the film shows what our own soldiers, nurses and their families and friends experienced in the carnage of WWI, which many young people are commemorating solemnly today, in the moving, annual ceremonies that we see them attending in large numbers, around the world.
    . . Super Reviewer

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