Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures | Release Date: December 25, 2011
6.7
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Generally favorable reviews based on 340 Ratings
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223
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66
Negative:
51
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7
grandpajoe6191Feb 13, 2012
I believe when Steven Spielberg was making "War Horse" he was pulling out that mindset he used to make "ET" and "Saving Private Ryan". I guess I wasn't born it the early Spielberg era where his movies shone with pure passion and love, soI believe when Steven Spielberg was making "War Horse" he was pulling out that mindset he used to make "ET" and "Saving Private Ryan". I guess I wasn't born it the early Spielberg era where his movies shone with pure passion and love, so honestly it was kinda cheesy to me. But the war portion of the movie was just great. It had strong imagery and visuals with messages saying the bad stuff about war. I know, it's all kinda old style but at least it was watchable so I still give it credit. Expand
5 of 7 users found this helpful52
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8
BhawkDec 25, 2011
Spielberg's War Horse is an unabashedly old-time, feel-good flick done in the style of John Ford (How Green Was My Valley) from the Golden Age of Hollywood. Includes gorgeous cinematography, solid editing, a decent screenplay adaptation,Spielberg's War Horse is an unabashedly old-time, feel-good flick done in the style of John Ford (How Green Was My Valley) from the Golden Age of Hollywood. Includes gorgeous cinematography, solid editing, a decent screenplay adaptation, acceptable acting, and a sweeping classic film score by five-time Oscar winner, John Williams. It would be pretty hard not to at least LIKE this one, and War Horse will be enjoyed by most anyone from ages 7 to 97. Grade = B+. Expand
2 of 3 users found this helpful21
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7
gunnyartDec 26, 2011
Above average, but just. The better part of the movie plods along at the pace of a plow horse. Then without warning it descends into mayhem and brutality. At one point (near the end) several people quickly spirited their young children outAbove average, but just. The better part of the movie plods along at the pace of a plow horse. Then without warning it descends into mayhem and brutality. At one point (near the end) several people quickly spirited their young children out of the theater. (I hope they got a refund.) We were concerned our twelve year old might not sleep peacefully following it. It wasn't clear to me if we were supposed to live the experience through the eyes of the horse or were stuck in a sort of astral plane above the drama. It tried every trick to yank at your heartstrings but never quite made you feel empathy for any of the characters, human or horse. I'm quick to admit I'm a sucker for a tear jerker and so is my wife but, we came out feeling like we had been manipulated not moved. We never shed a tear. So why the score of seven. We really like uplifting stories about animals. which it was undeniably, just not a great one. Expand
4 of 7 users found this helpful43
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10
CINEFILODec 25, 2011
It is an emotional journey in full gallop. The project is tailored for Spielberg's 'Saving Private Ryan', a specialist in military history and also for Spielberg's 'ET', the chronicler of infantile wishes and desires family.
4 of 8 users found this helpful44
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10
darthgerberDec 25, 2011
War Horse is a beautifully crafted film with a soul stirring narrative. It manages to be both heart-warming and heart-wrenching at the same time. The audience empathizes with both the protagonist horse and all of the people who findWar Horse is a beautifully crafted film with a soul stirring narrative. It manages to be both heart-warming and heart-wrenching at the same time. The audience empathizes with both the protagonist horse and all of the people who find themselves unexpectedly his caretakers.

The story is engaging and entertaining, and the pacing is consistently good, and at times, brilliant. Visually, War Horse is striking. Warm and breathtaking vistas juxtaposed with the gritty realism of war. John Williams ' score doesn't disappoint, punctuating the film's emotional highs and lows with the perfection only such an auteur is capable of.

Spielberg has created another epic cinematic winner, the like of which hasn't been seen since his Saving Private Ryan. Overall, a most enjoyable film and surely one of the year's best.
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2 of 4 users found this helpful22
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7
heyitsmegrif4Jan 1, 2012
War Horse features incredible performances and just stunning film work. And its mighty story can feel very unrealistic and cheesey because it is. War Horse is packed with too much heart and emotion to actually give this a bad rating evenWar Horse features incredible performances and just stunning film work. And its mighty story can feel very unrealistic and cheesey because it is. War Horse is packed with too much heart and emotion to actually give this a bad rating even though you should. I give this movie 72%. Expand
1 of 2 users found this helpful11
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10
paulgreenFeb 11, 2012
Spielberg has been ridiculed for shooting his actors from below against impossibly Spielbergian skies and a denouement that lays the love on copiously. But there's nothing simpleminded about how he uses movie magic, as a spell to dispelSpielberg has been ridiculed for shooting his actors from below against impossibly Spielbergian skies and a denouement that lays the love on copiously. But there's nothing simpleminded about how he uses movie magic, as a spell to dispel nihilism, to save us from the worst of ourselves by summoning up the best. Expand
1 of 2 users found this helpful11
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7
TVJerryDec 30, 2011
Spielberg's live-action holiday entry is an adoption of the novel and play about an intrepid, remarkable horse and the people who cared for it. It starts on an English farm, where a young boy raises and trains Joey. With the onset of WorldSpielberg's live-action holiday entry is an adoption of the novel and play about an intrepid, remarkable horse and the people who cared for it. It starts on an English farm, where a young boy raises and trains Joey. With the onset of World War I, Joey travels involve the British and German armies and a French girl. All shot in a lush, low-angle, highly-lit version of Hollywood in the Golden Age. There's no denying that Speilberg is a master storyteller and this film has some spectacular sequences. It's also full of emotional twists and turns that left many in the cinema wiping their eyes. For me, I appreciated the craft more than I cared about the characters. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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7
BikerjamesDec 26, 2011
There is an old movie called the Yellow Rolls Royce, where you see the various owners during the life of the car. At one point the car is used in the war to transport soldiers. This movie is basically the same plot but with a horse. I wasThere is an old movie called the Yellow Rolls Royce, where you see the various owners during the life of the car. At one point the car is used in the war to transport soldiers. This movie is basically the same plot but with a horse. I was expecting a sappy family film based on the trailer, but instead saw a shockingly graphic war film. This film is definitely not for kids. Although the acting is good throughout, the star is the horse Joey. The cinematography set in Devon, England is gorgeous. You will wonder how he filmed some of the scenes with the horse. When the horse falls, or gets intertwined in barbed wire it looks absolutely real, and horrifying. As I stated, take kids at your discretion, I do not recommend it. Although this is not a great Spielberg film such as Close Encounters or E.T., it is a good one and held my attention throughout. Expand
1 of 4 users found this helpful13
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7
BKMDec 27, 2011
War Horse is beautifully filmed and the story is engrossing, but the film never really stirs the soul or evokes any sort of emotional reaction. It is a movie that you watch but never really become a part of. A solid effort from one of theWar Horse is beautifully filmed and the story is engrossing, but the film never really stirs the soul or evokes any sort of emotional reaction. It is a movie that you watch but never really become a part of. A solid effort from one of the most gifted storytellers in the history of the medium, but not even close to a truly Spielbergian experience. Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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8
DarkCriticJan 19, 2012
War Horse is a very nice well done movie that focus along with the horse. I really enjoy this movie so much and there's not much to say about it! But for what it is, this is another decent film for Spielberg's best.
0 of 3 users found this helpful03
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8
adelezaabaFeb 12, 2012
The best movie so far in 2012. A perfect amount of tragedy and comedy. The plot ran smoothly and it is definitely worth to watch. Although, I would like to know more about the fate of young Emile.
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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8
allystewJan 9, 2012
A surprise for me that I really liked this movie. Yes it may be a "family" movie about a boy and his horse but you would need a heart of stone not to feel a soft spot for it. Its almost like an art film in that it is so gorgeous to look atA surprise for me that I really liked this movie. Yes it may be a "family" movie about a boy and his horse but you would need a heart of stone not to feel a soft spot for it. Its almost like an art film in that it is so gorgeous to look at from the green English country side to the brown trenches of WW1. I was not expecting much from Spielberg after the disappointment of Tintin but I'm so glad I was wrong and its more like the heart of E.T crossed with the scale and scope of Saving Private Ryan. My only downers is that it was a little too long and the human performances while good are not stand out. However don't let that put you off a great night at the cinema and a return to form for one of cinemas great story tellers. Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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8
musicalmarkApr 23, 2012
Sometimes a movie is more about entertainment and sometimes more about message. War Horse is more an emotional entertainment vehicle, "Lassie Come Home" on steroids. But its WWI backdrop inevitably has message intrusions I think viewersSometimes a movie is more about entertainment and sometimes more about message. War Horse is more an emotional entertainment vehicle, "Lassie Come Home" on steroids. But its WWI backdrop inevitably has message intrusions I think viewers can't avoid. In an extra features discussion Spielberg says, "this isn't a WWI movie". Sorry Steve, inevitably it is. Unfortunately the mixture of a warm 10,00:1 heartfelt reunion saga against the backdrop of the human and animal slaughter of the first world war creates too much dissonance for those who seem unable to connect with the directors vision - or in this case, particular set of blinders. Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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7
BrucenelsonDec 26, 2011
The story of course is about a horse of course and all its various owners, which works but makes the movie overly long, but probably the biggest flaw is the ET aspect of the movies -- is this a kid's movie or something more, I don't thinkThe story of course is about a horse of course and all its various owners, which works but makes the movie overly long, but probably the biggest flaw is the ET aspect of the movies -- is this a kid's movie or something more, I don't think Speilberg knows and shoots for the middle and never quite hits the right tone for this story. Beautiful photograpy, some wonderful moments, usually the more grown up realistic moments. I had just read a book about WW I and wish that he had steered the story more into what was really happening. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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10
franiJan 14, 2012
This might be Speilbergs best movie to date. Such a pleasure to see an epic film shot withought CGI a real cinematic experience. It has it all superb acting, well edited, beautifully shot, and most of all the marvelous story with it'sThis might be Speilbergs best movie to date. Such a pleasure to see an epic film shot withought CGI a real cinematic experience. It has it all superb acting, well edited, beautifully shot, and most of all the marvelous story with it's timeless anti war message, a true classic.
I do have one major criticism and that is the God awful score. It is so unecessarily and completely over the top as to be gratuitious. You have something so lovely and powerful there is no need cue the viewers for the right emotion for this particular scene. I wish Mr. Speilberg would rescore it, the music sets the wrong tone and almost cheapens it.
Otherwise it is sublime and it will win best cinematography and perhaps best picture as well.
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0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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8
HalfwelshmanJan 17, 2012
I'd first like to make it clear that I haven't yet had the privilege oof seeing the acclaimed stage show War Horse, so I won't be comparing this film to that, but just judging it on its own terms. Spielberg's first foray into WWI is anI'd first like to make it clear that I haven't yet had the privilege oof seeing the acclaimed stage show War Horse, so I won't be comparing this film to that, but just judging it on its own terms. Spielberg's first foray into WWI is an unbelievably good looking film - hugely dramatic, sweeping wide shots make the very most out of the pretty Devon countryside as well as the hellish, war-torn battlefields. War Horse doesn't lack heart-string-tugging drama either - the relationship between Albert (Jeremy Irvine) and his horse Joey is compelling from the very beginning of the film, and you really feel like you've gone on the same painful journey they have to find each other again. Gravitas is added, and great performances given by a huge cast of British old-reliables and rising stars - in no particular order, Tom Hiddleston, Benedict Cumberbatch, Emily Watson, David Thewlis and Eddie Marsan, plus reinforcement from international talent in the shape of Liam Cunningham and Niels Arestrup. All the major players in the film make Richard Curtis and Lee Hall's already excellent script dazzle. A special mention should also be saved for Joey the horse, though he was played by numerous equine actors, he makes for a very engaging character - an achievement considering his ability to communicate with us is limited to pawing the ground and horsey facial expressions, so well done to the horse trainers. The horses are arguably as important as the people in this story, just as it should be in a film with "horse" in the title. Spielberg quite rightly acknowledges the loss horrific loss of life, not only of "our brave boys" but of their steeds as well. In one of the most powerful moments in the film, as a British cavalry charge into a German camp is torn to shreds by a line of machine guns concealed in the woods, the camera pulls out to reveal the battlefield absolutely covered with the lifeless bodies of horses. The war element to the film remains shocking, even with a 12A certificate - there is very little blood shown, but the battles are still intense and gut-wrenching. One of Spielberg's many talents is the de-glamorisation of war - you really feel drained and shaken after being dragged over the top with the soldiers frantically dodging machine gun fire in no-man's land. Because of the lower age classification, the Somme battle scene is intense, but not graphic, and I am hugely thankful for this, as if Spielberg had done a Saving Private Ryan with this sequence, it would have been unbearably horrific to watch. At its heart, War Horse is a family epic, so expect melodrama aplenty. Also expect everyone speaking English in heavy accents rather than their native tongues (the most annoying aspect of the film) and a fairytale "happily ever after" at the end. These are pretty minor issues - I don't mind a bit of soppyness now and again, and I guess Spielberg didn't want twelve year-olds losing interest when the foreigners started speaking, and who doesn't love a good old-fashioned Hollywood ending? When a film looks this good, with plenty of great performances, yet another fantastic John Williams score and several soon-to-be-iconic sequences (Joey running the length of no-man's land and the unexpectedly funny and poignant meeting between a German and a British soldier as they work together to free the aforementioned horse from barbed wire both stand out in particular) there's a lot to love about War Horse. It's not quite the classic it might have been, but it's a great, well-meaning family film which shows Steven Spielberg is back on form. Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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8
Tazmania32Jan 12, 2012
I really didn't think I would like this film, even being a big Spielberg fan ("Munich"), but it was way better than I thought. Granted it did have that kinda of cliche, sappy story, but it worked, thanks to the acting and cinematography.I really didn't think I would like this film, even being a big Spielberg fan ("Munich"), but it was way better than I thought. Granted it did have that kinda of cliche, sappy story, but it worked, thanks to the acting and cinematography. Wasn't his best, but still a solid ass film. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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7
cabritaOct 20, 2012
War horse is an over long flawed premise with a very powerful climax. At two and a half hours running time the beginning sequences can become too long and repetitive. The flawed premise is that millions of people died in world war 1 and yetWar horse is an over long flawed premise with a very powerful climax. At two and a half hours running time the beginning sequences can become too long and repetitive. The flawed premise is that millions of people died in world war 1 and yet the film is preoccupied with the life of a horse. However by the end of the film this could be forgiven. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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8
MajorBobJan 2, 2012
Big Steve has once again brought to the screen a gripping story of war, family, sacrifice and redemption. Make no mistake, however, this film is no "Saving Private Ryan." His cinematographer is the same and naturally John Williams hasBig Steve has once again brought to the screen a gripping story of war, family, sacrifice and redemption. Make no mistake, however, this film is no "Saving Private Ryan." His cinematographer is the same and naturally John Williams has provided an excellent musical score but the protagonist this time is a horse named Joey.

World War I serves as the back drop, as we follow Joey from an English farm to the battlefields of France. Joey has to be sold to an English cavalry officer due to his family's financial misfortunes. He winds up serving with the German army, spending time with a young French girl and her grandfather and ends up stranded in a barb wired section of "no man's land." Spielberg has crafted a satisfying ending to a long (2 hours, 30 minutes) journey for both horse and owner. This movie has none of the blood and gore of Saving Private Ryan although there are plenty of battle scenes and casualties. I have to assume this an attempt to appeal to a wider audience. As much as I loved Saving Private Ryan, it was so emotionally jarring that I can't watch it again from start to finish. War Horse doesn't have that type of impact but it's a good story certainly worth watching more than once.
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7
lahaineJan 8, 2012
Though I honestly wished Spielberg went into grizzly and challenging territories (much like he did with Schindler's List and Saving Private Ryan), how can one not enjoy War Horse. Spielberg went on autopilot when directing this film; with allThough I honestly wished Spielberg went into grizzly and challenging territories (much like he did with Schindler's List and Saving Private Ryan), how can one not enjoy War Horse. Spielberg went on autopilot when directing this film; with all the familiar 'Spielbergian' charms and sentimentalism layering the story. This came at the expense of a gritty look at the horrors of World War I, however the bulk of emotion that loomed elsewhere in the story was almost enough to compensate. The film was handsomely produced with bold cinematography, and a pounding sound design amongst other things. The film was quite good, and its self awareness made it even better. Expand
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7
shimano6000Feb 18, 2012
Look, this movie can get cheesy. It is good though. I don't think it takes itself too seriously, which is helpful when watching it to remember. Is it worth seeing at the Cinema? It wouldn't hurt to. There are much worse movies you could wasteLook, this movie can get cheesy. It is good though. I don't think it takes itself too seriously, which is helpful when watching it to remember. Is it worth seeing at the Cinema? It wouldn't hurt to. There are much worse movies you could waste your time on. I was glad I took the time to watch this movie. You will be too. Not one for the children though. Expand
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10
TiberSeptimDec 27, 2011
An absolutely beautiful emotional rollercoaster. I cannot praise this movie enough on grounds of cinematography, music, and a dozen other things. I know I hugged my cat the second I got home.
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8
avatar16Feb 22, 2012
On le disait déjà avec Tintin, mais cela se confirme avec Cheval de Guerre : Steven Spielberg est bel et bien de retour ! Après plusieurs déceptions (Indiana Jones 4) ou filmsOn le disait déjà avec Tintin, mais cela se confirme avec Cheval de Guerre : Steven Spielberg est bel et bien de retour ! Après plusieurs déceptions (Indiana Jones 4) ou films différents à son univers (Arrête-moi si tupeux, Le Terminal), le réalisateur retrouve enfin son cinéma ! Ce qui n'aime pas son travail pesteront sans nul doute sur la naïveté de cette histoire. Mais derrière ce divertissement familial aux airs enfantins se cache un film puissant, critiquant les horreurs de la guerre de manière originale (du point de vue d'un cheval) et offrant quelques séquences émouvantes et également spectaculaires (pour les scènes de batailles, on retrouve le Spielberg d'Il faut sauver le soldat Ryan). Mais avec ce film, il faut surtout saluer la photographie (splendide), la mise en scène (aussi sobre qu'efficace), le dressage des chevaux (les animaux sont des acteurs à part entière) et la musique de John Williams (qui se rattrape largement après Tintin). Bref, un Spielberg grand cru! Expand
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9
battleTerrorJun 11, 2012
Great film. The tone exists somewhere between reality and a fariy tale. The phrase 'they don't make them like they used to' does not apply to this film. It's rich in film making tradition and craft. Spielberg is still in a class of his ownGreat film. The tone exists somewhere between reality and a fariy tale. The phrase 'they don't make them like they used to' does not apply to this film. It's rich in film making tradition and craft. Spielberg is still in a class of his own and has remained admirably true to his values despite more cynical times. This is a film that wears it's heart on it's sleeve and has no pretensions. All the regular Spileberg collaborators have turned in top work: John Williams has written one of his most stirring scores, Janusz Kaminski's cinematography is superb as usual and he has given the film more colour saturation than usual to bring the beautiful locations to life. Production values are all top. The film is very well cast too and all the actors really inhabit their characters even though they are subtly caricatured.

The second act of the film is my only real criticism. It's slightly malformed and unexpected but this doesn't detract from the film as a whole. There is an obligation to the source material that perhaps holds the film back in places. Overall this is a must see and it's great to see Spielberg make a film that echoes his work from 2 decades ago.
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10
buellerbuellerFeb 11, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This is my favorite film of the year. Steven Spielberg has made another classic in his library, though people may just call it a Spielberg film that got nominated for Best Picture and nothing more that that (sorry for insulting you, "Munich" fans). "War Horse" is more than a war film. It tells about a farm boy who raises a horse bought on accident. The two are inseparable, but then the horse is enlisted in the British army. The boy makes a vow to see his horse someday. We then see the marvelous and somewhat frightening journey of the horse through the war. The sound is too loud, which means it must be good. The score by John Williams is another important entry in his filmography. Even the cast is brilliant, mainly Emily Watson and whoever played the boy. The cinematography is spectacular, with the shots carefully and skillfully planned out. Overall, I haven't seen that many war films, but if they're like "War Horse", I'll be renting the entire genre on Netflix in no time. Expand
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9
SpunkyMonkeySep 9, 2012
A really cool feel-good film, yes it's a bit corny, yes it's a bit implausable but next we'll be getting drongos down-rating ET because it's an "insult to their intelligence that aliens exist" (jbuddah - it's called a back up plan/trap - yourA really cool feel-good film, yes it's a bit corny, yes it's a bit implausable but next we'll be getting drongos down-rating ET because it's an "insult to their intelligence that aliens exist" (jbuddah - it's called a back up plan/trap - your critisisms are easily explained away by those with the intelligence to see a bigger picture). Being from a rural part of England myself the film captures the genuine magic which does exist on those warm country nights when running with the animals. Granted it sugar coats everything and there's not one sign of any horse poo, but it's non the worse for it and the free-flowing adventure is as warming as it is simplistically entertaining. A typical Speilberg Disney-esq fairytale and one I thrived on. And those who think that their kids haven't seen more gore on the net really need a reality check. Expand
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7
SirLouenFeb 27, 2012
Definitely after watching this film I've been associating it with SCHINDLER'S LIST, another attempt to "create history" (or same private ryan). This type of films are very Spielberginians. It was very entertaining enough to stay there like 2Definitely after watching this film I've been associating it with SCHINDLER'S LIST, another attempt to "create history" (or same private ryan). This type of films are very Spielberginians. It was very entertaining enough to stay there like 2 hours and a half without looking to the watch. Not for an Oscar but good to be seen at least on DVD. Expand
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7
EssenceOfSugarMar 13, 2012
Yes, it's a horse. Thousands of soldiers died in the First World War, but it was OK because a horse lived. That does sound cheesy. Steven Spielberg is sometimes known for his cheesiness, but I think the point about the horse was, wherever itYes, it's a horse. Thousands of soldiers died in the First World War, but it was OK because a horse lived. That does sound cheesy. Steven Spielberg is sometimes known for his cheesiness, but I think the point about the horse was, wherever it went, it touched the hearts of everyone. It showed strength at the worst of times. The sad scenes made my heart ache, but the happier, more pleasant scenes helped me through, such like the horse. What I didn't like was that the film might have been stretched out too long, making room for a few soppy, or mostly unnecessary scenes and dialogue. Expand
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8
RobinsNestDec 28, 2011
Mr Spielberg knows how to make a movie. Familiar story brought to life exquisitely. Well acted, vivid portrayal of war and the stories surrounding it. It is rich, warm, harsh, and emotional. A standard setup, gains momentum and rouses as weMr Spielberg knows how to make a movie. Familiar story brought to life exquisitely. Well acted, vivid portrayal of war and the stories surrounding it. It is rich, warm, harsh, and emotional. A standard setup, gains momentum and rouses as we near the end. It's not all happy as there is pain and suffering to go around. It's nice to see a positive, up lifting film, that inspires hope with faith. Expand
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8
Alexander_FredDec 28, 2011
Based on a children's book, War Horse truly feels like a children's story made for adults. The journey of the horse was quite imaginative and the characters he encountered were well created and the actors gave them a feeling of genuineness.Based on a children's book, War Horse truly feels like a children's story made for adults. The journey of the horse was quite imaginative and the characters he encountered were well created and the actors gave them a feeling of genuineness. The battle scenes were at times even reminiscent of scenes from Spielberg's classic Saving Private Ryan. Nonetheless, while inspirational and touching, War Horse at times becomes far juvenile when one really thinks about the boy's infatuation for the horse, especially in terms of how it continues well into adulthood. Expand
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9
subhadip1524Jan 10, 2012
Steven Spielberg is best as always he is.A beautiful emotional journey of friendship i can say...I am sure after watching this movie you will get up from your sit clap your hands for this movie..
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8
panderson1988Feb 7, 2012
Personally I enjoyed the movie, but there were a couple of things that irk me. The first 40 minutes of the movie when the boy is connecting with the horse is very cliche. The sunlight is absolutely perfect, they are literally glowing outPersonally I enjoyed the movie, but there were a couple of things that irk me. The first 40 minutes of the movie when the boy is connecting with the horse is very cliche. The sunlight is absolutely perfect, they are literally glowing out there, and etc... I didn't mind him training the horse and so forth, but the way it was done was so cliche. At least in Seabiscuit when they connected with the horse, it wasn't always done with the perfect sunlight and countryside. Once the horse get sold off for the war, then the movie really picks up and gets good. I'm not going to spoil the story, but the war and action scenes were well done. The horse's story and characters it deals with were more interesting than the boy was in the beginning. If you can get past the fluff that takes place early in the movie, it really picks up and literally becomes a movie geared towards adults. People die from gun fire, there is mustard gas, no-man's land is dark and gritty, and etc...

If you think you'll enjoy the war scenes, then it is definitely worth checking out. I hope Steven Spielberg one day makes a true World War 1 centric movie similar to Saving Private Ryan. I like Spielberg's work when it comes to historical fiction, especially with war time stories.
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10
allmoviesDec 28, 2011
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Set against a sweeping canvas of rural England and Europe during the First World War, War Horse begins with the remarkable friendship between a horse named Joey and a young man called Albert, who tames and trains him. When they are forcefully parted, the film follows the extraordinary journey of the horse as he moves through the war, changing and inspiring the lives of all those he meets-British cavalry, German soldiers, and a French farmer and his granddaughter-before the story reaches its emotional climax in the heart of No Man's Land. The First World War is experienced through the journey of this horse-an odyssey of joy and sorrow, passionate friendship and high adventure. Expand
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10
snailmoviesDec 29, 2011
Young Albert enlists to service in WWI after his beloved horse, Joey, is sold to the cavalry. Albert's hopeful journey takes him out of England and across Europe as the war rages on.
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8
AquophisDec 28, 2011
Gritty war movies and sappy horse movies aren't really my taste, but somehow when the two come together the result is greater than the sum of its parts.
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8
MustBe21orUpDec 28, 2011
It was good. There could have been some better acting with the main kid, but otherwise it was top notch. Beautiful cinematography and wonderful musical score.
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9
AbsalomDec 28, 2011
I was surprised at the reviews here at first, but reading them carefully I realize that the lower ratings are from people who do not understand the genre, have not managed their biases, display idiosyncrasies beyond the normal, or fix on aI was surprised at the reviews here at first, but reading them carefully I realize that the lower ratings are from people who do not understand the genre, have not managed their biases, display idiosyncrasies beyond the normal, or fix on a mote while the redwood stands before them. Ignore them.

The film, taken on its own terms, is nearly perfect. As a child's fable of the costs of war and the necessity of the cardinal virtues of faith, hope and charity - wrapped in the iron of courage - to endure them, Spielberg achieves a fit balance between realistic depiction and human heartedness. Technically, the film is superb. While I chafe at his films for their lack of intellect, over-directed manipulation of sentiment (John Williams needs to retire - he and Spielberg together have reached the point where we must have a musical stick rapping us to tell us what every gesture intends), and an inability to understand subtlety, in WAR HORSE everything comes together. His decision to use film stock lends a richness and depth to his painterly compositions. What could seem like over-planning (another tendency) works here because of the fable involved - we expect and need to see the pictures he presents. HIs care in details (horses' heads coming up together at a crucial moment, movement through a field of grain, a scene of a war's suspension beginning with an uncannily true horse calling episode) expressed through exquisite cinematography and editing tell the tale visually. The entire design of the film - from rural domestic and farm settings to village to French farmhouse to bivouacs to trenches to the engines of war - presented a real world that held the fable perfectly.

Excellent casting and performances throughout by all players, including extreme good fortune in the horses, and a judiciously compressed screenplay allowed the scope of the story to play through while keeping the crucial human scale intact. Characters were instantaneously established without seeming like stock figures. Also, the Spielberg juvenile - that dreaded commodity - did not appear. The young leads and were, in all regards, ennobled and uncloyingly endearing. No villains appeared; all characters were presented as humans caught in something terrible, whether a prewar economic circumstances or war's hangman's clutch. As for realism, again, some reviewers here mistake the genre and sputter over details that are beside the point in this sort of film. One must judge a film on its own terms, or accept being seen as a propagandist, polemicist, or philistine. Or, as can be seen in one review here especially, merely peevish.

I recommend WAR HORSE to anyone interested in a master filmmaker making the most of his great skills, suppressing his lesser tendencies or turning them to advantage, and presenting a simple fable about simple love enduring despite the forces of hate. The entire film, until its last minute, conveys an authenticity and rightness of tone that will delight most moviegoers and not leave them feeling embarrassed afterwards for being moved. They will have been moved, in this case, as children are, for all the right reasons.
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9
movie2187Dec 31, 2011
Corny, YES...DUH, Look at the plot details, but moving, amazingly told and unique to any currently out, while the genre is small it is certainly one of the best ww1 films and the best live action animal protagonist film. A movie that is feltCorny, YES...DUH, Look at the plot details, but moving, amazingly told and unique to any currently out, while the genre is small it is certainly one of the best ww1 films and the best live action animal protagonist film. A movie that is felt and involving throughout and afterwards you wonder how was it all done! Expand
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10
ronatthemoviesJan 2, 2012
SPOILER ALERT!! A SUPERB film! Superb cinematography, Direction and story!! And the horse deserves an Oscar!! This film DOES stir the soul, emotions and has many scenes that definitely tug at your heartstrings, not to mention yourSPOILER ALERT!! A SUPERB film! Superb cinematography, Direction and story!! And the horse deserves an Oscar!! This film DOES stir the soul, emotions and has many scenes that definitely tug at your heartstrings, not to mention your nerves. And, then there is Spielberg.... He is pure genius at work again and again.. Expand
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10
koplopJan 8, 2012
This is a good movie . This one is available at http://tinyurl.com/MovieStreamingOnline
in English, in HQ quality FREE . Plays like youtube .


This movie is availabe for free in HD at:

http://tinyurl.com/MovieStreamingOnline


recommended.
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10
ruinous3Jan 6, 2012
our president recently signed a bill to legalize horse slaughter in this country. the movie industry is making profits from WAR HORSE but are they donating any of the proceeds to help the plight of real horses ? Mr. Spielberg et al , shouldour president recently signed a bill to legalize horse slaughter in this country. the movie industry is making profits from WAR HORSE but are they donating any of the proceeds to help the plight of real horses ? Mr. Spielberg et al , should at the very least , be aware & make others aware of the gruesome reality that horses in this country face. i urge all who read this to educate yourselves of the awful facts on the treatment of horses in this country & to petition the movie industry / government to address this issue. as individuals & as a nation , we need to advocate for these majestic animals. it is utter hypocrisy to glorify horses while condemning them to a bitter future. thank you... Expand
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7
lasttimeisawFeb 29, 2012
Saw Spielberg's latest WWI epic film in the cinema, although I'm not qualified as an animal zealot, I have yet seriously raised any pets (the most intimate contact is two goldfishes once I had at home). But film-wise, it is an overall solidSaw Spielberg's latest WWI epic film in the cinema, although I'm not qualified as an animal zealot, I have yet seriously raised any pets (the most intimate contact is two goldfishes once I had at home). But film-wise, it is an overall solid work from Spielberg, far from his best, but still a magnificent viewing occurrence.

All the elements packing up in the film are slightly deja-vu from Spielberg's oeuvre, the different episodes through which our protagonist horse progresses are patchily distributed, particularly the one centers on the French girl and her grandfather (Celine Buckens is annoyingly snobbish in her over-fabricated role, namely the rolling down of a tear through her cheek scene is loathsomely designed, which is also dramatically underscored in the trailer), which backfires with an incongruously dreamed-up sentiment against the gruesomeness of the warfare. The human race cast is generically on their routine route without any over-exposition, which escalates the horse Joey to distinguish itself as the default tearjerker here, and even though everything is fictional, I feel agonizing to witness animals to being coerced to labor heavily just to earn back some human tears, it is not a fair play as we could never procure any consensus from them. I give the film a 7/10 despite all these said disconcerting factors, cinematically speaking, Janusz Kaminskiâ
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10
DanedadJan 15, 2012
Good movie, not a great one. War scenes are intense and maybe too dramatic but Spielberg does not do things in a small way. The abuse that the horses suffer at the hands of their masters is appalling but that was then... My wife and I wereGood movie, not a great one. War scenes are intense and maybe too dramatic but Spielberg does not do things in a small way. The abuse that the horses suffer at the hands of their masters is appalling but that was then... My wife and I were touched by the horse entangled in barbed wire because we had a horse in a similar predicament...That scene was painful to watch.... Good movie about war and hard life and how the world finds the right answer in the midst of chaos and the worst of our kind.... Expand
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7
Odin777Jan 25, 2012
Don't get me wrong...this is a solid film that holds to other films by Spielberg. War Horse also is beautifully shot and well crafted. The issues arise when looking at the acting and part of the writing. Jeremy Irvine (Albert) is not strongDon't get me wrong...this is a solid film that holds to other films by Spielberg. War Horse also is beautifully shot and well crafted. The issues arise when looking at the acting and part of the writing. Jeremy Irvine (Albert) is not strong enough of an actor to carry the film throughout. While he has some really strong moments, he is still rather fresh and has a lot of room to grow. The supporting cast that surrounds Irvine is what helps keep the film together. The story itself is also something that bothered me a little bit. While I was pulled into the story and invested in Joey (the horse and the center of the story), it seems rather odd how someone Albert's age gets so attached to an animal so quickly. The story from the horse's perspective is done well, but one cannot ignore the fact that the story itself is odd because of it. Regardless of its issues War Horse deserves its spot as one of the best of the year. Expand
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8
zgdeltaJan 22, 2012
This movie was solid and nothing more. I could see why many people disliked it, but I enjoyed it. It was a little too sappy for me. It had some intense scenes and the acting was fine, but not Oscar worthy. I will admit, I got a little tearyThis movie was solid and nothing more. I could see why many people disliked it, but I enjoyed it. It was a little too sappy for me. It had some intense scenes and the acting was fine, but not Oscar worthy. I will admit, I got a little teary eyed at the end. It was also visually appealing. Expand
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8
SammiJan 24, 2012
War Horse is a refreshing, visually spectacular masterpiece from a genius of a director. One can see throughout the consistent efforts to capture emotions from perfect angles, and project them with amazing lights and a deep rousingWar Horse is a refreshing, visually spectacular masterpiece from a genius of a director. One can see throughout the consistent efforts to capture emotions from perfect angles, and project them with amazing lights and a deep rousing soundtrack.

The way it's presented is always mind-blowingly perfect - as one would expect from Spielberg. This, in addition to some amazing sets and terrain textures (both natural and artificial) make War Horse a feast for the eyes. In addition one has time to delve into the atmosphere without losing sight of the story. Also the soundtrack is beautiful throughout. The impacts of gun fire and shell explosions have not been muffled or distorted, giving a real sense of sudden quiet and then utter panic.

Unlike a standard script where there is one plot, War Horse attempts to create many plots and blend them together, while projecting them one at a time. The characters each share a separate connection to the horse, and although this is one of the film's biggest achievements, it also fundamentally creates some of its weaknesses.

The transitions through each phase of the film, wherever that be at peace or at war, is sometimes lacking in relevance to the original plot presented in the first 25 minutes. This could have been made easier to adapt to if the time was taken to keep reflecting back to the main protagonist and make the story constantly feel relevant, but it doesn't, at least not enough to feel that necessary connection.

Thankfully, the effects of that deviation are minimized, and very often embraced warmly as the scenery changes with intrigue and engrossment, especially since the new owners of the horse individually make themselves a part of the overall concept, or at least in feel. There are no shallow characters, and quickly one understands each character inside out, allowing only short sections of the story to feel longer and more enjoyable, even though in real time it is merely minutes. This in itself gives the story a huge sense of epic scale involvement from all sides of the war and humanity.

All this combined with the changing environments give War Horse an image that could never be fully expressed in a single piece of art. You cannot compare this film's script to any generic structure or formula, and for this War Horse is special. Spielberg took a risk separating the protagonist from the plot so early on, and perhaps if he kept him in constant relevance to every character or chapter then the film may have felt easier to watch, especially for replay value. However this aside the gamble did largely pay off, and the result is a multitude of adventures of possibility the now best known horse in fictional cinematic history.
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7
MossyCDLFeb 6, 2012
If you want to see a film that is visually stunning and that touches your heart, this movie is for you. The plot-line is not the strongest, drawing on all the typical Spielberg cliches, and even delves into truly ridiculous circumstancesIf you want to see a film that is visually stunning and that touches your heart, this movie is for you. The plot-line is not the strongest, drawing on all the typical Spielberg cliches, and even delves into truly ridiculous circumstances which sometimes compromise the accuracy of World War I. The movie starts out slow paced, but then picks up at the end. That being said, the lead actor did a decent job for his first major acting role. Expand
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9
Vanessa_SMar 17, 2012
Definitely an excellent film. Actually, I think it's a pity that War Horse didn't win even a single Oscar this year. Comparing to Schindler's List, which is too cruel and depressing for me, this movie is warm and beautiful. The music is alsoDefinitely an excellent film. Actually, I think it's a pity that War Horse didn't win even a single Oscar this year. Comparing to Schindler's List, which is too cruel and depressing for me, this movie is warm and beautiful. The music is also enjoyable. A good film for animal lovers. But the script is not as good as I imagined and the end may be a little bit idealistic. Expand
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8
yoshikartguyMar 3, 2012
As many people have said, the movie starts off very slow but quickly picks. I thought this movie was going to be horrible, however it turned out to be very good. The movie has a very cheesy/cliche ending, but other than that very amazing movie.
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10
pitcherandyFeb 24, 2012
If u truly love animals, this movie is at least a 9 on a scale of 1-10. If you dont like animals and u want a war movie only, then this probably isnt for you.
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9
fanguychrisMar 17, 2012
War Horse isn't for everyone but if you're its audience then you can appreciate this amazing piece of cinema. Spielberg has successfully brought the brilliant novel to life with this risky but still amazing film. Some people might find a lotWar Horse isn't for everyone but if you're its audience then you can appreciate this amazing piece of cinema. Spielberg has successfully brought the brilliant novel to life with this risky but still amazing film. Some people might find a lot of it slow, but its stunning war battle scenes will open anyones eyes, and the way the film bonds you with its characters makes the climactic scenes all the more powerful. Spielberg has given us another brilliant film that I would highly recommend. Expand
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9
csw12Mar 24, 2012
War Horse is a classic Spielberg film with its great landscapes and excellent music. i loved the way the movie showed how the horse transformed each character it met through the war. A truly wonderful film for the whole family.
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8
DoehlMar 25, 2012
It is as innocent as a horse because Spielberg does not promote a form of political thinking, but rather celebrates love in the most unexpected places.
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8
jd_cocoMar 27, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Took my fiancee who loves horses to see this movie, and we both enjoyed it very much. The scenic shots were very enjoyable, and I liked the story. The part where the German and English soldiers are working together to free the horse was quite entertaining. I wasn't expecting this to be a super realistic film, because it's obvious that that is not what it was intended for. It was intended to be fun and inspirational, and that it certainly was. Expand
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7
ObbiePR18Apr 4, 2012
No estan encantadora como crei que fuese, pero War Horse es un solido filme, con corazon y con una clasica direccion de Spielberg. Hubiese querido que este filme fuese mas basado en la relaccion del protagonista con el caballo. ..pero laNo estan encantadora como crei que fuese, pero War Horse es un solido filme, con corazon y con una clasica direccion de Spielberg. Hubiese querido que este filme fuese mas basado en la relaccion del protagonista con el caballo. ..pero la adaptacion fue memorable. Expand
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9
BradleyCohenAug 30, 2012
Steven Spielberg knows what makes a film great. In this day and age, the theaters are flooded with computer animated cartoons and over-the-top teen comedies. War Horse is a return to the golden age of cinema: inspiring dramas that tug at yourSteven Spielberg knows what makes a film great. In this day and age, the theaters are flooded with computer animated cartoons and over-the-top teen comedies. War Horse is a return to the golden age of cinema: inspiring dramas that tug at your heartstrings. Based on the stage play of the same name (which is based on the novel of the same name), War Horse is a remarkable story of a young Englishman who forms a powerful bond with his horse. Tragedy strikes when World War I breaks out, and the two become separated as his beloved horse is drafted into the army. What follows is some of the best dramatic moments I have ever seen. As far as action scenes go, it's your typical war drama fare: the violence makes the situation more intense for the characters. One particularly notable scene is where several horses are pulling heavy artillery cannons for the German Army, but when any of them fall to the ground, they are simply euthanized and replaced. One of the soldiers becomes merciful and attempts to prevent this, which makes us feel sympathetic for someone who's suppose to be a villain.
One thing I like about this film is the music. John Williams has composed almost every Steven Spielberg film, so it's no surprise that he was called in to do this one. His orchestral score is perfect and the music alone is enough to make you cry. The sets are impressive, reflecting both the battlefields of World War I and the early 20th century architecture of the English and French countrysides. While I can't say War Horse is a perfect film, it still ranks among Spielberg's best. It's a timeless story that adds up to a great experience.
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8
WachachaAug 25, 2012
We all know that when Director Steven, makes a film, it is always going to be a surprise, no matter the topic/subject. and WAR HORSE was a good surprise!
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7
cameronmorewoodNov 7, 2012
War Horse is a live action, more violent version of a Pixar film. The plot surrounds an empathetic bond being broken, a bit of meandering, and the restoration of that bond. Despite this, the movie is beautifully filmed and Speilberg's talentWar Horse is a live action, more violent version of a Pixar film. The plot surrounds an empathetic bond being broken, a bit of meandering, and the restoration of that bond. Despite this, the movie is beautifully filmed and Speilberg's talent shines through its visual captivity. Expand
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8
Compi24Nov 28, 2012
It may be a little overlong, and it may feature one or two stagnant characters, but in the end "War Horse" prevails as a technically beautiful period piece featuring some noteworthy storytelling.
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9
worleyjamersDec 6, 2012
Steven Spielberg, yet again, proves to be one of the best directors and story tellers of our time. Only he could take a story about the relationship between a horse and his boy and turn it into a heart warming adventure. The characterSteven Spielberg, yet again, proves to be one of the best directors and story tellers of our time. Only he could take a story about the relationship between a horse and his boy and turn it into a heart warming adventure. The character development is arguably the best thing about the film; War Horse has many different characters, some only in the movie for a few scenes, but almost immediately their roles in the grand story are seen. The cinematography is gorgeous and the score sweeping. I can't recommend this film enough. Excellent; one of the best films of the year! Expand
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7
jeremypJan 19, 2012
It's an epic, and it's grandly filmed, and we get to see war from both sides, but it's predictable and frankly quite shallow. I know it's a family movie so there are no edges to it, and the horse is the star and gets to be anthropomorphic,It's an epic, and it's grandly filmed, and we get to see war from both sides, but it's predictable and frankly quite shallow. I know it's a family movie so there are no edges to it, and the horse is the star and gets to be anthropomorphic, but it shows once again that Spielberg is a great maker of movies but rarely of great movies. As my grandson (13) said: " I went expecting to see a war movie with a horse in it and got a horse movie with a war in it." Expand
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8
NJWolfgangApr 3, 2012
Flawed. But there is redemption. The scene with the first attack confused me a bit as the machine guns seemed to be set up behind the camp and pointed in the direction of the camp. I suppose someone with military experience might be ableFlawed. But there is redemption. The scene with the first attack confused me a bit as the machine guns seemed to be set up behind the camp and pointed in the direction of the camp. I suppose someone with military experience might be able to explain that but it was confusing. I was immediately reminded of All is Quiet on the Western Front as I watched this and some say children shouldn't see this because of the depiction of the horrors of war. Perhaps if more children saw these types of films and the horrors began to register in their minds there might be less war. The cinematography is excellent. The set designs and sound are also excellent. The horses are brilliant. The acting isn't bad either. It's all about the script which seemed to be the problem with a great many films this past year. From Take Shelter to Tree of Life screenplays seemed to find a brick wall and never figured out how to get around them. War Horse is no different than any of the others. Expand
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7
OfficialMar 8, 2014
"War Horse" is an elegantly shot film. It's emotional, sweet, touching and thrilling. It's not perfect, but this certainly shows us the beauty of friendship and the strong bond of love.
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10
BrianMcCriticMay 2, 2013
Steven Spielberg creates an emotional and exhilarating film that you will have a hard time not to love or to keep your eyes dry. The journey of this horse is one of the best films of 2011.
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7
shrapnel77Oct 4, 2013
Torn between a six or a seven,I felt generous. While the movie is well made, as all Spielberg movies usually are, there is an empty involvement throughout the film that this is a war picture. You rarely, if ever, see any horse or humanTorn between a six or a seven,I felt generous. While the movie is well made, as all Spielberg movies usually are, there is an empty involvement throughout the film that this is a war picture. You rarely, if ever, see any horse or human getting shot. You hear the gun, then see the dead horse pulling artillery. You see machine guns blazing away (no sound), then see dead horses and men in a field. Spielberg dances around the issue that this is war. It is disgusting, ugly and vile, but we are carefully steered of that fact. It is a movie for younger kids, so I get he does not want them to be upset of the real travesty that war is. Man is disgusting and ugly, yet here he gets a pass. Expand
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9
PvtJacksonDec 22, 2013
Two things stand out in this film compared to other war movies directed by Spielberg: 1) It portraits an incredible journey of a horse and 2) There is are no "stupid, unskilled" German soldiers like those we see in "Saving Private Ryan".Two things stand out in this film compared to other war movies directed by Spielberg: 1) It portraits an incredible journey of a horse and 2) There is are no "stupid, unskilled" German soldiers like those we see in "Saving Private Ryan". Both sides British and Germans are wonderful men. The film totally earns it's place as one of the best movie of the year. Expand
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10
CherryxldNov 23, 2014
War Horse es una película asombrosa, que te atrapa desde que empieza la película, Steven Spielberg da un buen enfoque a la historia, que llena al público de acción, emoción, preocupación, etc., en general, es un muy buen film.
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9
JohnMasterLOct 20, 2015
Spielberg sabe manejar perfectamente la acción y el drama en esta gran película. Una bella historia con muchos personajes bien desarrollados gracias a la estupenda dirección de Spielberg, no es su mejor película, pero es sin duda alguna unaSpielberg sabe manejar perfectamente la acción y el drama en esta gran película. Una bella historia con muchos personajes bien desarrollados gracias a la estupenda dirección de Spielberg, no es su mejor película, pero es sin duda alguna una increíble película. Expand
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9
andrebarrosoDec 19, 2014
This movie might not be the best one directed by Steven Spielberg, but surely should not be forgotten, or ignored.
Like any other Spielberg feature, "War Horse" brings to the audience ground-breaking visuals, with an astonishing
This movie might not be the best one directed by Steven Spielberg, but surely should not be forgotten, or ignored.
Like any other Spielberg feature, "War Horse" brings to the audience ground-breaking visuals, with an astonishing cinematography and several tributes to all kinds of movies, like Stanley Kubrick's "Paths of Glory".
Spielberg drowns the audience into the terror and fear of WWI. Rick Carger's production design was worth an Academy Award nomination.
One again, the Spielberg-John Williams team does it again. William's score might be the best one of his entire career. Saturated, with no exaggerations.
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9
horizonbtsMar 21, 2015
Kind of a throwback movie the way they used to make em, such as a Lassie, Flicka, or Black Beauty movie. Still with that said the movie has passion and takes place with the back drop of WW1. A young man named Albert after losing his belovedKind of a throwback movie the way they used to make em, such as a Lassie, Flicka, or Black Beauty movie. Still with that said the movie has passion and takes place with the back drop of WW1. A young man named Albert after losing his beloved horse to the needs of war, himself goes off to fight battle on the front lines. Very passionate and as you would expect a beautifully directed movie by Steven Spielberg! For me this was a delightful movie as you get to see it through the eyes of many, both human and beast, and those touched by the tragedy of war. Expand
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10
mm007Jul 22, 2016
[10/10]
Pros:
1. Story of a brave, strong, handsome horse.
2. Situation of a war and its effect on a country is well depicted.
3. Full of Emotion.
4. Awesome direction by Steven Spielberg.
Cons:
Nothing.
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9
smartmartSep 20, 2015
A great war film from Spielberg. It has great war sequences, some good acting, a heartwarming story, and it stays interesting throughout. While not as good as some of Spielberg's other works, it is an absolute masterpiece, although it is aA great war film from Spielberg. It has great war sequences, some good acting, a heartwarming story, and it stays interesting throughout. While not as good as some of Spielberg's other works, it is an absolute masterpiece, although it is a little cheesy. But its just a movie, just try to appreciate it for what it is! Expand
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7
CineAutoctonoDec 17, 2015
" War Horse " is a very good movie very inspiring , and with the stamp of Steven Spielberg , for what training a horse , very good, but sent aa war because I think that is not trained for nothing.
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8
audreythomas25Feb 9, 2016
Steven Spielberg's "War Horse" is an imperfect film, but certainly is a beautiful one.

Watch here for free http://www.watchfree.to/watch-27722b-War-Horse-movie-online-free-putlocker.html
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8
EpicLadySpongeMay 4, 2016
Steven Spielberg (and John Williams as usual) returns in an all new adventure based on the novel that seems to be set before and during World War I. War Horse is lovable for history nerds.
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8
CinemaphileJul 29, 2016
In #WarHorse, Spielberg returns to the genre which he is best suited. No, not epic war films, but films about coming of age. War Horse is both beautiful and horrific, epic and personal. With the assistance of Janusz Kaminski, #SpielbergIn #WarHorse, Spielberg returns to the genre which he is best suited. No, not epic war films, but films about coming of age. War Horse is both beautiful and horrific, epic and personal. With the assistance of Janusz Kaminski, #Spielberg masterfully employes his dramatic trademark dollies into closeups of the earnestly emotive faces of actors giving the best performances of their lives. Spielberg continues to pay homage to Ford and Wilder as he does in all his films, giving cinemaphiles an extra layer of complexity.

However, this story is as simple and poignant as ET or AI, drawing upon those relationships we forge in childhood. Some have criticized War Horse for being too mature for young audiences, but compared to the abattoir which is modern cinema, War Horse is a throwback to movies of two generations ago. The violence is not sensational, but realistic enough put those characters we care about in real jeopardy without being manipulative.

Spielberg's cast is not star studded, which works to the advantage of this film. By casting those who are not recognizable, we are able to see ourselves in them much more easily, they are everymen and everywomen.

The star is clearly the horse. The character Joey is not as two dimensional as The Black, in The Black Stallion. Granted, there is a danger of anthropomorphizing an animal, but anyone who is the custodian of a domesticated animal knows that they are intelligent and have a wide range of moods. War Horse's animal trainers and horse wranglers deserved a special Oscar for delivering incredibly expressive performances from the horses of this film. Joey's harrowing experience in No Man's Land is both the most heart wrenching and most uplifting scene I've ever seen in cinema.

Though this story is completely implausible, it succeeds in suspending our disbelief, due to Spielberg's gift of magic and the innocence of the children's novel from which it is drawn.

A must for your BlueRay collection.
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