War Horse The Movie

Well… I never. Here I am writing my humble blog about crafting.. the next thing I know, I am whisked along the Red Carpet for the War Horse Royal Premier. I kept pinching myself to try and wake up (though not too hard, rather nice dream to be in).

Thanks to Dreamworks and Ancestry UK, I was invited along with another 3 Mummy Bloggers to experience and see the new War Horse movie out on Friday 13th. Why me, I hear you shout?

Well, some of you may know that the Red Ted household is a bit of a higgle-dy piggle-dy kind of household. There are Polish, Austrians, Spanish, Hungarians and of course British all jumbled in in our family. We have wood cutters and aristocrats  in the family.. and I have been *meaning to* do a family tree craft with the children for a very long time now. Admittedly it will be a simple 3, maybe 4 generations kind of affair, but those alone will touch on 7 countries if not more. Interestingly, the army and war are key elements of our family history – on my husband side the military has  a strong family history and on my side, our family originally arrived in Austria (from Poland) during an invasion of Vienna by the Turks. They helped fight against the Turks, then settled. This goes back several 100 of years…. anyway, I am digressing massively. The craft *will* come *soon*.

Back to War Horse. So with a military history and a family tree in the offing I came along.

And what an opportunity it was:

We got to see the cast arriving – Emily Watson (*cough* see the photo), Tom Hiddleston, Peter Mullan and Benedict Cumberbatch and of course the Jeremy Irvine, protagonist of the movie. Even “Joey, The Horse” was there (what a lovely horse).

Rather excitingly though was the attendance of Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, patrons of one of the many military charities represent that night. Kate looked absolutely stunning. I could go on for ever…

Right.. and what about the film, I hear you shout?!

War Horse is the film adaptation of novel by Michael Morpurgo.

The story in short:

War Horse is set during World War 1 and follows the story of a Joey, The Horse and the young Albert who not only trains the horse from a young colt to working horse, but who forms a special bond and relationship with the horse. Joey means everything to Albert. However, devastatingly Albert’s father is forced to sell the horse to the army at the beginning of the war. Albert at the time is too young to enlist, so Joey goes alone. We follow Joey’s journey through the war until he is miraculously reunited with Albert.

What did I think of the film?

I have to say, over all it was a rather moving and touching film. The part of the movie that will probably stay with me the longest is a number of scenes set in the trenches and no mans land. It reminds you of really quite horrific war is and was. Even with the spectacular filming and directing, I still cannot begin to image what it must have felt like to be a soldier at the front. Cold. Wet. Hungry. Frightened.

What I really liked about the film, is that it showed all sorts of different aspects of the war and didn’t “just depict the Germans as the baddies”. War is tough and you move on. There are rules (deserters on both sides get shot, although the Germans are still that little bit meaner and crueller). Local farmers are raided for food and rations. Animals are collateral. Horses are worked to near death and then shot. This is a tribute to both soldiers who lost their lives in the war, as well as the 100,000s of horses that gave their lives. A beautiful story. Filmed in stunning Dartmoor. Gorgeous sunsets and British villages.

Photo: Official photographs for Dreamworks


Overall it is a little “cheesy” at times, but if you can ignore that as “just being Hollywood”, you will really enjoy War Horse. Certainly a great story, with wonderful actors and food for thought. (P.S. and yes, the sunsets are *real*, that is stunning Dartmoor for you).

Thank you to Dreamworks, the marketing peeps for War Horse, Ancestry UK and the Radisson Edwardian hotel for a fabulous night out. It was great to meet up with Nova, GigiJanis and Annabel.

I do love blogging and my blogging buddies!