Reviews

Gallipoli: Special Collectors' Edition

5

Gallipoli is a requiem for the courageous sent off to die by the cowardly. It may focus on an obscure campaign fought by raw Anzac recruits against the Turks in 1915, but it's a more affecting anti-war howl than most of its more fashionable Hollywood rivals.

Director Peter Weir zooms in on two coltish sprinters - Archy (Mark Lee) and Frank (Mel Gibson) - as they manfully step up for the cause, but boyishly crave the thrill. We see the hopes, fears, bluster, banter... and, finally, horror.

"It's a great film," says a freshly interviewed Gibson in the superb feature-length Making Of. "It's entertaining, educational and spiritual." That's down to Weir expertly shifting the tone from earthy to lyrical, building to a withering finale of bungled communication, trench embraces, prayers and that final, blood-chilling, freeze-frame. A silent scream for a generation lost, and a humanist rebuke for all the masters of war.

 

Film Details

  • U
  • UK Theatrical Release Date: April 3rd 2006

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