Country: Ireland / others
Movie Review: “Queen and Country” is John Boorman’s sequel to the awarded autobiographical “Hope and Glory”, which covered nearly the ten years before the happenings depicted here. In 1952 post-war England, Boorman’s alter-ego, Bill Rohen (Callum Turner), joins the army and starts the trainings for the Korean War, escaping whenever he’s on leave ‘to see the girls’, together with his best friend, Percy Hapgood (Caleb Landry Jones). During one of these escapades they go to a classical concert, but while Percy gets fascinated with the extroverted Sophie (Aimee Ffion-Edwards) and her friend, Bill only has eyes for a young girl whom he only sees the back of the head and neck. A few days after the concert, he sees her passing by the bar, and in an uncontrollable impulse, decides to talk to her. For this courageous act, the Oxford student, Ophelia (Tamsin Egerton) invites him to her aunt’s place for a drink. They become close friends, however, the next step into love was never consummated since Ophelia had different plans for the future. In parallel with his amorous passions we have access to a full insight of his life within the army, and the different kinds of relationships established with his superiors and colleagues – the unbending veteran Sgt. Major Bradley (David Thewlis) and the imponderable, lazy private Redmond (Pat Shortt), were two examples. The family also gets a small slice in the story, with Bill’s sister playing a relevant role. Globally, the film assembles modest episodes of the early life of the 82-year-old filmmaker, who recreates them in his own personal way and always with a funny touch. The lively Percy contributes with some jocular incidents that enrich substantially the whole. Deprived of action or intensive drama, “Queen and Country” works better as a comedy, and is more charming than revolutionary.