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After Gallipoli …

July 25, 2011

… there was still a war to be won.   “Beneath Hill 60” is an Australian movie based on the extraordinary true story of Captain Oliver Woodward and the First Australian Tunnelling Company on the Western Front during World War One.

They were tasked – in part – with defending and maintaining leaking, labyrinthine tunnel systems underneath Hill 60.  These 21 mines were very deep, going beneath the Germans own tunnels.  The plan was to detonate the mines, which were filled with 450,000 kg (close to 1 million pounds) of explosives, at a strategic moment, in order to kill as many Germans as possible.  But it all depended on whether they could prevent the Germans from discovering the mines, and also stop them flooding.

 Because of the nature of the mining endeavour, and the dangerous conditions all round,  the film easily maintained a sense of suspense and tension, interspersed with action sequences and a few introspective flashbacks. The miners weren’t restricted to the mine, having at times to cross the lines, and the portrayal of the life in the trenches was extremely realistic, I would imagine.  The acting was superb.  All in all, one of the best war movies I’ve seen, and certainly equal to the classic ‘Gallipoli’ by Peter Weir. 

Rated M : 2 hours long.  Reviewed by Natalie.


From → DVD, Review

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