Thanks to Mark's Christmas Gift – a Vue Cinema Voucher, this afternoon we went to see War Horse
I am not going to spoil it for those who you who have yet to read the book, or see the film. Michael Morpurgo writes cracking good stories – and I suppose Steven Spielberg and Richard Curtis have to modify the tale to make it appropriate for the big screen.
In the book, the story is told by the horse, Joey – and it would probably sound daft to have someone doing an equine voiceover. So they introduce different human characters in order to put the story across, and tweak the story in quite a few places.
I am not convinced they were all necessary additions or changes– nor do I understand why they had to replace a Welshman talking about Rugby with a Geordie discussing German Frauleins giving massages.
Anthony Bloom [in the credits as “Goose Trainer”] did a good job training the goose. The goose is not in the book, but I think he may be in the stage play.
The final scenes of Albert’s mother, Rose, at the farm were shot at sunset and all very lovely, throat-catchingly beautiful stuff. They looked just like this picture. Except that picture below is Vivien Leigh, in Gone With The Wind!
And what do the other critics say?
Sue, our Librarian, said to me that she found the film “quite long, and Disney-esque” and I am inclined to agree, Spielberg has poured excessive emotional syrup over it .
Bob said there was no proper sense of time, showing the whole thing covered the four years of WW1 – he likened it to “Saving Private Ryan For Horses”.
Mrs Morpurgo apparently commented on the basic errors made at the beginning of the film whilst the horse was ploughing – but otherwise Mr & Mrs M have remained largely silent about the project [very wise]
Kate went with Prince William, and she cried.
I cried too, copiously. I started weeping at the point when the young boys were marching off to die in the trenches, for the sheer folly of it all – and wept again in the sad bits and the touching bits…
You’ll just have to go and see it for yourself – or be like Liz, wait for the DVD, and then you can weep in private!