Oscar Contenders: Christopher Nolan’s ‘Dunkirk’ Brings World War II to Life
With Hollywood’s awards season upon us, we’re examining the oddsmakers’ favorites to nab coveted trophies at the upcoming 90th Academy Awards. Christopher Nolan’s World War II epic Dunkirk will be a top contender at the Oscars.
Based on a true story, the film’s official synopsis reads:
In May 1940, Germany advanced into France, trapping Allied troops on the beaches of Dunkirk. Under air and ground cover from British and French forces, troops were slowly and methodically evacuated from the beach using every serviceable naval and civilian vessel that could be found. At the end of this heroic mission, 330,000 French, British, Belgian and Dutch soldiers were safely evacuated.
Dunkirk, the first film from Dark Knight trilogy director Nolan since 2014’s Interstellar, was a smash success upon its July opening. The film has brought in $525 million worldwide, in the process unseating Saving Private Ryan to become the highest-grossing World War II film of all-time.
The film faired nearly as well critically, holding a 93 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, a 94 on Metacritic, and an A- on Cinemascore. Longtime Rolling Stone critic Peter Travers wrote of the film, “…There’s little doubt that he (Nolan) has, without sentimentality or sanctimony, raised that genre to the level of art. Dunkirk is a landmark with the resonant force of an enduring screen classic. The Oscar race for Best Picture is officially on.”
So far, the film has made over 20 year-end Top 10 lists, including being lauded as the best film of the year by Rolling Stone, Entertainment Weekly, The New York Times, and Total Film.
Dunkirk has won, or been nominated for, numerous awards from critics associations across the country. Most recently, the film was nominated for three Golden Globes: Best Picture (Drama), Best Original Score, and Best Director (Nolan).
The film’s critical acclaim and growing number of award nominations have led many to speculate that Dunkirk should be a favorite going into the Oscars, particularly in the Best Director category.