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Benediction

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

United Kingdom, United States
·
2022

2h 17m

Director Terence Davies
Starring Jack Lowden, Peter Capaldi, Simon Russell Beale, Jeremy Irvine
Genre Drama, History, War
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Decorated for bravery during World War I, British soldier Siegfried Sassoon returns from service and becomes a vocal critic of the government's continuation of the war. Adored by the aristocracy and the stars of London's literary and stage world, Sassoon's experiences inspire him to write poetry about the horrors of battle.

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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

83

IndieWire by David Ehrlich

This is a film that trembles with a need for redemption that never comes, and the urgency of that search is palpable enough that you can feel it first-hand, even if Benediction is never particularly clear about the nature of the redemption it’s hoping to find.
70

The Hollywood Reporter by David Rooney

This biographical drama, grounded in the anguished poetry of its protagonist, is hushed and decorous to a fault. But it does eventually wind its way to a profoundly affecting conclusion.
67

The Playlist by Gregory Ellwood

Despite Davis’ lyrical direction, the obvious gaps in the screenplay provide too many holes for what strives to be a definitive portrait of an exceptional talent.
75

The Globe and Mail (Toronto) by Kate Taylor

The dialogue is quietly scathing, and the production values are sumptuous. But Davies seems most interested in Sassoon as a symbol of hemmed-in Englishness. As a character, he remains poetically opaque.
80

The Guardian by Peter Bradshaw

Benediction is not an easy experience and some of the caustic, brittle dialogue scenes with Sassoon’s celebrity acquaintances are grating – yet deliberately so. The sadness is overwhelming.

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