'Queen & Country'
(Callum Turner, Richard E. Grant, David Thewlis, Tamsin Egerton, et al / DVD / NR / 2015 / Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Overview: In this long-awaited sequel to the acclaimed 1987 film 'Hope and Glory', Bill Rohan - a child of the Blitz - comes of age just in time for the Korean War.
DVD Verdict: For those not in the know, writer and director John Boorman introduced us to some of these characters back in 1987 with the marvelous war time tale 'Hope and Glory'. Bill is now ten years old and has been sent off to do his National Service – only we are now involved in the Korean War (which still limps on to this day – peace never having been formally agreed). He and his mate Percy though end up stuck in base camp teaching the typing pool.
Life in the camp is far from fun and games and the strict Regimental Sergeant Major and Sergeant Major make their life a bit of a hell – so they create diversions, shenanigans and go chasing the girls near the base by way of diversion. However, as with all diversions – whether on camp or elsewhere – there will be consequences.
Now this is a very well made film, period detail is great etc. The make up is all good and the acting is generally very good. Caleb Landry Jones as Percy Hapgood though struck me as miscast – his accent is, well, rather unplaceable, so to speak (perhaps as he is even American?); he does the emotion well but seems a bit unhinged – which may indeed have been the point.
David Thewlis is probably the most stand out performance as the irritatingly unlikeable Bradley – and shows how broad his acting abilities are. Overall though a very good film and if you were a fan of the original, then you will probably want to see – but the jokes are much thinner on the ground here, but it still has a vibrancy that evokes the time and the passion in an endearing way. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Feature of:
A Behind the scenes look at the making of Queen & Country