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Queen and Country

A gentle comedy about a young soldier serving basic training in post-WWWII England<

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In 1987, director John Boorman released Hope and Glory, which drew on his own, often-comic experiences of being a boy in London during the Blitz. Now comes his sequel, set in 1953, in which the lad Bill Rohan is now a young man conscripted into the British Army. The men are being trained for service in Korea, but the goings-on in this comedy are confined to the training base in the English countryside. There, the recruits conspire against their rigid superiors; flirt with nursing students; and shake off the effects of the war, as a brighter future begins to emerge from the lingering dust. (At least that's the case for this younger generation; those who were adults during the war and its disruptions carry more permanent, if unseen, scars.) It's a rather gentle film that quietly makes its points about how life remains rocky for some time after a catastrophic event. And if Queen occasionally stumbles into clich├ęd territory (the women are a collection of thin stereotypes), it still makes for pleasant sentimental journey.

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