Culture Gabfest on Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, Winston Churchill, and Pearl Harbor.

The Culture Gabfest on Dunkirk’s Beautiful but Not Saccharine Ending

The Culture Gabfest on Dunkirk’s Beautiful but Not Saccharine Ending

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Aug. 3 2017 3:34 PM

How the Ending of Dunkirk Managed to Be Beautiful but Not Saccharine

A spoiler-rich Culture Gabfest deep dive.

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Photo by Melinda Sue Gordon - © 2016 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., Ratpac-Dune Entertainment LLC and Ratpac Entertainment, LLC

Spoiler alert: In the Slate Plus bonus segment of Wednesday’s edition of the Culture Gabfest, Dana, Julia, and Stephen discuss the ending of Dunkirk.

What was it about the film’s ending that made it so exquisite, and what saved it from straying into nauseating sentimentality? How would being British—and being as acquainted with the historical events of Dunkirk as Americans are with, say, Pearl Harbor—have changed the emotional resonance of the film? It goes without saying: This movie is much better than Pearl Harbor.

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