Watch: Video Compares 'Dunkirk' Footage with Real Archival Footage

December 24, 2017
Source: Vimeo

Dunkirk Footage

"Hope is a weapon. Survival is victory." One of the standout movies from 2017 is Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan's intense and riveting WWII thriller about the Dunkirk evacuation in 1940 at the beginning of World War II. Nolan put a great amount of effort in recreating the scenes and experiences as accurately as possible, and that can be sensed when watching the movie on a big screen. Editor and cinema lover Titouan Ropert has created a video featuring six minutes of side-by-side examples of photography & archival footage from WWII compared directly to footage from Nolan's Dunkirk. It's actually breathtaking to see how remarkably accurate it is, and makes me appreciate the movie even more. A few comparisons have been made on social media already, but this video shows how incredibly meticulous Nolan was on this movie. It's worth a watch.

Thank you to Film School Rejects for the tip on this video. Description direct from Vimeo: "Comparison between archives (Photos/Footage) from the evacuation of Dunkirk ("Operation Dynamo", 1940) and the Christopher Nolan's movie Dunkirk." It features English and French subtitles if you need them. Created by Titouan Ropert - find more of his work on Vimeo or follow him on Twitter @Titouan_Ropert. Christopher Nolan filmed most of Dunkirk on the actual beaches where the evacuation took place, and recreated much of it focusing on the "realism" above all. He even recruited 12 of the original little ships that participated in the Dunkirk evacuation to appear in the film, re-enacting their presence in 1940. Nolan's Dunkirk first opened in theaters on July 21st, 2017 in the summer. Read more on the evacuation here. Thoughts on the movie?

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Reader Feedback - 14 Comments


oh i liked that!

Rembo on Dec 24, 2017


Worst movie of year.

Pincode on Dec 24, 2017


Nope. Not at all.

Alex Billington on Dec 24, 2017


troll comment

Ash master on Dec 25, 2017


You'd have missed out big time by missing it on the big screen. It's still beautiful on 4k, but the huge impact is in the theatre. And as far as your comments about Nolan "copying" archive footage is downright inaccurate. If anything, it's obvious he studied old archive footage, but in no way stole anything verbatim

Krishna Nadoli on Dec 25, 2017


It was glorious on the big screen. The audio work was spectacular too.

Mark on Dec 26, 2017


Tied for dumbest statement of the year.

Mark on Dec 26, 2017


"Interesting perspective". That's your response? To somebody trolling "Worst movie of the year" to a film you haven't even seen? Please take your trolling self elsewhere, this site was specifically built for not you.

Mark on Dec 26, 2017


Well, he's just going for accuracy visually. The rest of the movie is innovative in the way the three storylines converge and the rest of the interaction. Plus it's an impressive achievement simply to get this kind of attention to detail so perfect. Makin' movies ain't easy, you know.

Alex Billington on Dec 24, 2017


Stated in the article "Christopher Nolan filmed most of Dunkirk on the actual beaches where the evacuation took place, and recreated much of it focusing on the "realism". I wouldn't even want to know your thoughts on Band of Brothers.

Mxyzptlk on Dec 24, 2017


IF Roger Deakins loses to anyone this year, it better be Hoytemaq

Krishna Nadoli on Dec 25, 2017


Nailed it.

DAVIDPD on Dec 25, 2017


Painfully, hauntingly beautiful. The movie was far beyond anything I was prepared for, and I had no idea how much he researched. Much respect to him, I was never much of a fan before this amazing work.

Mark on Dec 25, 2017


Ummm - if you are making a movie about a Major Historical Event, where there is 'easily' obtainable footage about the real event (not to mention some folks still alive who LIVED IT), how else would one "tell the story"?? Apparently Dunkirk is proud history of those in the UK... until this movie came out, I'd *never* heard of it in the US. That's partly why such films should be made. Even better when there IS archival records as to what *did* happen (or was reported to have happened by each side, in some events), than to make a romanticized or fictionalized movie or book.

VAharleywitch on Dec 27, 2017

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