Thread: 1917

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    #61
    Senior Member Liam Hall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DLD View Post
    Is that İlkay GŁndoğan next to Roger?

    PS. As a military history buff - more Second than First - the film's premise is absurd. One would not send a pair of infantrymen for this task but likely a full squad. In other words, as ridiculous as the Mac Guffin in "Saving Private Ryan" was, this is much worse so, being a borrowed item and all.
    I don't know about that... ...It was common practice to send runners through the trenches to deliver messages - remember Mel Gibson in Gallipoli? Plus, the film is based on the experiences of Sam Mendes' Grandfather. So, who knows?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liam Hall View Post
    I don't know about that... ...It was common practice to send runners through the trenches to deliver messages - remember Mel Gibson in Gallipoli? Plus, the film is based on the experiences of Sam Mendes' Grandfather. So, who knows?
    Adolf Hitler was a messenger in WWI - a risky job since you have to jump out of the trench and be subjected to a stray bullet or an artillery shell. Which weren't all that stray.

    But those messengers were usually from the front line trenches and the dugouts to the regimental HQ's in the rear and back. Obviously, in a war that lasted over four years and involved tens of millions of combatants, all sort of unforeseen stuff happened. But it'd be very much a necessary practice for any advanced formation to leave a line of retreat - unless it was the Red Army in WWII with their NKVD rear guard detachments that shot at own soldiers - and a line of communication, so not to be isolated.

    In terms of signals, it'd likely be Morse code since that consumed less energy than a voice enabled radio. In WWII, the German tanks had a 5km voice and a 10km Morse code range. The telephone lines were prone to all sorts of complications but my aunt's last husband (they both passed away) was in a signals company in the Red Army and, since they lacked wireless, someone had to carry large spools of cable behind the advancing troops. One time he got a Nebelwerfer fragment in his butt while performing his assignment; had to use a tree branch to get back to own lines. In any case, it's very unlikely that a regimental size formation would not have any communication backups.

    The most common sense scenario in this film's would be to send a recon airplane and drop the commands from the tree top level, if landing was impossible. But, in practice, the WWI era biplanes could land on any patch of land. The Royal Flying Corps had the Sopwith Pup (replaced by Sopwith Camel in front line duty by 1917) that could land on a postage stamp ... (in perfect condition, it could take off in 120 ft).

    Also, a battalion wasn't likely to be recalled anyway. I am sure the name Douglas Haig rings the bell. WWI was a meat grinder, casualties be damned.


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    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p07rffzd

    BBC World on Fire premiers tomorrow on PBS. It's WWII, so should have some interesting points. It's currently 86% on Rotten Toms, 7.1 on IMDB.

    Note to directors - when you show infantry in city fighting, don't make them look as if they just stepped out of the shower. This is from 1944 but the point is the same.

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