From director Saul Dibb (Bullet Boy, The Duchess) comes this piercing new adaptation of R.C. Sheriff’s seminal 1928 anti-war play, featuring a vast array of British talent led by Sam Claflin, Asa Butterfield, Paul Bettany, Tom Sturridge and Toby Jones.
In the trenches of World War I, youthful new recruit Lieutenant Raleigh (Butterfield) has pulled strings to join his childhood hero Captain Stanhope (Claflin) on the front line. But Stanhope is horrified by Raleigh’s arrival into the tension and claustrophobia of the officers’ dugout, where they are anticipating a massive German advance. Altered almost beyond recognition by his years at the front, Stanhope is sustained only by one thought: that when the war is over he can return to his beloved, Raleigh’s sister Margaret.
A towering classic, Sheriff’s play is adapted with ambition and sensitivity in this extremely moving film, which – released in the centenary year of the Armistice, and informed by modern psychological insights – focuses its gaze above all on the pathos and harrowing emotional costs of war.