MovieChat Forums > A Very Long Engagement (2004) Discussion > How much combat is portrayed in this fil...

How much combat is portrayed in this film?


I realize that A Very Long Engagement is a romance set in WWI, but I expect that it is mainly not an explosion filled war movie (which isn't a bad thing, don't get me wrong) but primarily a romance. However, my father is a major WWI collector, and since cinema favors WWII to WWI, there aren't a great number of movies out that have really good WWI war scenes. I'm thinking he might really enjoy this, but only if it has a considerable amount of combat, or at least just battlefield screen time. It might be a wonderful romance, but if it doesn't have a good deal of combat shots (Im not saying the majority of the film, but a fair portion directly involving scenes of WWI), then he probably wouldn't find it to be his taste in movies. Whether or not its more romance or combat, Im sure it's fantastic, but I'm considering whether or not to get it for him because of it being involving the firs World War, and the copy at Hastings is $20 D: I wish I could find it for rent first! Can somebody who has seen it please help me out with answering my question? Thanks in advance :)

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it's a fantastic film, and while it's no Saving Private Ryan in terms of combat scenes, they are there and they are brilliantly done- I don't think anyone would be really disappointed by the film

Chuck Taylor > me > everyone

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Ok, thank you :)

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i thought the scene where the soldier threw the grenade up and blew up the plane was awesome

hey, yoda needs to give some better advice, or yoda needs to shut the *beep* up

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[deleted]

heat like burning, that sounds stupid how fake can a movie get?!?!?!

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it didn't look fake, its in the trailer check it ou

hey, yoda needs to give some better advice, or yoda needs to shut the *beep* up

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Kind of a late reply to this, but the artillery exploding looked very real. In daylight you'll see a very brief flash at the center of the explosion and then all the debris kicked up by the blast.

I know this because I was artillery support and have seen many real shells impact and explode. I was very surprised to learn that it was accomplished with air canon, foam, dirt, and sand. The flash was digitally added post-production. They did an excellent job.

Watta ya lookn here for?

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I have a late question to your late reply.

My question is in regard to the sound artillery makes. You mentioned the visual look of an explosion during the day, what about the sound? Is it more of a dull thud, or is it a dramatic whiz bang type of sound?

thanks!



Hitler! C'mon, I'll buy you a glass of lemonade.

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Jeunet mentioned in the director's commentary that he really borrowed much of the combat scenes, or the style of them at least, from SPR. Spielberg actually borrowed back some ideas(from jpj) for War Horse.

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I'm a history fanatic, but WW1 is not an event or period I've had much interest in. Among my thoughts while watching the film were: "this film really, really shows the horrors of trench warfare"..."Perhaps I should study more about WW1, its got its own drama, and its not just the precursor to WW2" and "wow, these are really well done battle scenes, and why haven't I seen ones like them them before?". I figured the answer to that last one is that WW2 was such a cataclysmic event, involving so much of the globe, that WW1 gets eclipsed by it. Your speculation re: mainly a romance or drama movie is spot-on...there aren't alot of battle scenes, but the ones that are there are well-done.

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WWI was what it was called: the First World War, or up to WW2, The Great War. It involved the whole world, Europe, Russia, Africa, America, the far East, and just about all the colonies. Around 20 million are said to have died, including civilians, vastly more than in WW2. Three great European monarchies fell: Russia, Austria and Germany, and countless smaller ones. The Trench war was a four year stalemate slaughter and achieved nothing. A bit of ground captured after weeks of fighting was lost to the enemy and fought over again. The style of fighting was groups of men charging over the top of trenches straight into machine gun fire, over and over again. The dead were left where they fell. To this day there are vast war graves in France with white crosses as far as the eye can see in every direction, and in many places the land is still pitted with craters formed by explosives. An entire generation of men was wiped out. Cataclysmic is almost too mild a word to describe it.

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Around 20 million are said to have died, including civilians, vastly more than in WW2.


Not true...the Soviets had over 20M by themselves in WWII.




Still it's a shame that WWI isn't studied as much, because it arguably is more significant to our lives today (given the breakup of the Ottoman Empire into the Middle East tinder box we know and love).

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The movie (and the book) deals more with the consequences of the war than the fights. The approach is to show how lives of small people were entirely destroyed by this war. Every aspects are treated: the desertions, the self-mutilation, the people who survived combat and died afterwards of spanish flu, the wives and children left alone to fend for themselves, the people so badly wounded they could never come back to a normal life...

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It is a great film. More a romance than a war movie, really, but the combat scenes of trench warfare are present, and they are very graphic at times.

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I was kind of surprised. I've watched it perhaps six or more times. Depending on my mood that day it might be seen (by me of course) as romance, detective story, or war story. In reality it is all three and all the better because of that.

Watta ya lookn here for?

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