Like most movie lovers, I dragged myself to the theater in the last couple of weeks to see Christopher Nolan’s latest epic, Dunkirk.
Telling the story of the crucial World War II Battle of Dunkirk, Dunkirk details the tremendous effort made by those across Europe to rescue allied soldiers from the soon-to-be enemy control beaches of Dunkirk.
Despite the Allies’ slim chance of success — with Britain even going as far as discussing a conditional surrender to Germany — the Allied forces were able to rescue over 330,000 soldiers.
However, despite Nolan’s frankly excellent and detailed portrayal of how terrifying and miserable those shores must have been, there is one glaring omission from the film, save for the closing words: Winston Churchill.
Naturally, after seeing the movie, I was curious about all things World War II, so I went home and did a little self-research. And during that research, I discovered that this year is coincidentally the year of Churchill in Hollywood.
Counting Dunkirk, three feature films about Churchill and his legacy at British Prime Minister come out in 2017, with one of them looking like it has a real shot at Oscar gold:
Coming from director Joe Wright (Pride & Prejudice, Atonement), Darkest Hour stars Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill and follows his early days as Prime Minister as Hitler closes in on Britain in World War II.
Just based on the trailer, Oldman is essentially a lock for a nomination for at least a couple of reasons. First, the Academy LOVES the portrayal of a legendary figure at the center of a true story (Leo, McConaughey, Redmayne, & Day Lewis have all won in recent years for portrayals of real people). Second, everybody loves Winston Churchill, and finally, Gary Oldman is considered one of the best actors in the world.
All of this — the director, the topic, the actor — lead me to believe that Darkest Hour is going to be one of the best reviewed and most heavily-nominated films of the year.