Fifth about The Seventh

Five Came Back (2017)

Five Came Back: director Laurent Bouzereau’s and writer Mark Harris’ superb documentary series (it should be seen as a long unique feature, truly) deal with two dear subject matters: classic American cinema and World War II. It could be (simplistically and ungenerously) be seen as a making-of of a series of films, but it is so much more than that: a timeline of the war (“A World at Arms” it’s not, but still very informative), a chronicle of the times (dark as they were, outside and in the USA), a collection of anecdotes about the five directors, among other things it has to say about war. The five portrayed directors (Frank Capra, John Ford, John Huston, William Wyler and George Stevens) are all masters of their craft and very interesting characters, as well; the five portrayee filmmakers (no slackers themselves) are very knowledgeable about the subject and charismatic speakers. The material used is rich and varied, but there’s no denying the star of the show is the extensive, beautiful and terrible footage from WWII that all of them captured, or had captured, during their experience, and the documentaries that came out of it.

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