”That one alone will get us a couple crates of glue!”
0-15:00 The movie opens with John Williams piloting a plane with his orchestra who he has kidnapped. The deal is that they have to keep playing that sappy music he likes so much or else he will crash the plane. You ever wondered how he managed to get so much soundtrack work? Now you know. So Williams is spying on this town which seems to exist only for the sake of a horse-driven economy. Most people’s lives revolve around buying and selling horses. No other commerce is permitted. One of these horses is called War Horse, and a family trains him to assassinate a member of Austrian royalty. War Horse is obviously a code name for Whitney Houston. The horse starts smoking rocks all day.
15:00-35:00 I’m beginning to suspect this movie is making fun of itself. The other possibility is that this is this really going to be about a horse who grows up with a boy and then they later go to war together, ending with some kind of emotionally manipulative Disney-esque focus group-approved conclusion. Anyway, the horse starts training by punching the dead meat of its parents in a slaughterhouse and being tied by its neck to a moving car, which is blaring ‘Eye of the Tiger.’
It’s basically this, but with a horse.
35:00-55:00 The Whitney Houston Horse finally smokes enough crack to plow the potato farm. But the horse won’t be paid for it so this movie is glorifying slave labor practices. Also, John Williams and his orchestra are still hovering around spying on this whole thing. It’s weird that nobody seems to care enough to call the police on them. A local Job Creator who bet against Whitney living past age 45 is humiliated and has to pay the poors for losing. The father character drinks to forget about all the Africans he killed during some imperialist war. I drink to forget I still have an hour and a half of this movie to go. It’s a good thing I always keep two flasks full for when shit like this happens (That part is actually true). Also, Whitney gets drafted to help fight the British for Herr Hitler or something.
55:00-75:00 War stuff happens, and there’s like horses and stuff. I wasn’t really paying attention here. Getting pretty drunk already. Already done with my vodka flask and now it’s onto the Johnny Walker. The British lose because they’re British and the titular War Horse is the only one who survives. HOW CONVENIENT. Anyway, he quickly surrenders and starts working for die Germans. He changes his name to Treason Horse.
“Join the Central Powers, Wilbur!”
You know what? I really have to get super honest and break the fourth wall here. In a lot of these reviews, I’m sort of playing a character of someone who hates the movies in question more than I actually do. Sometimes I actually enjoy them but pretend I don’t. I liked Inception last year, and Midnight in Paris this year wasn’t too shabby either. Usually I’m focusing in a disproportionate way on the negative aspects of the films for comic effect. But here with War Horse I can’t really lay on additional fake, visceral hatred for what I’m watching than what I’m actually feeling as I watch this. War Horse is testing the bounds of my imagination and vocabulary to describe the disdain I have for it.
I mean I fucking wonder if the horse is going to wander through different supposedly heartwarming war stories in his journey back to his original owner. YOU THINK MAYBE THAT’S WHAT WILL HAPPEN? And on his way we as the audience will learn that whether you’re British or Irish or German or French we’re all really the same deep down – as long as we’re all white people who love war, of course.
In a way this is actually kind of liberating because from this point on in my life I know that my enemies can’t ever really inflict more pain on me than I have already to myself. If I find myself kidnapped by al Qaida and they’re about to saw my head off with dull and rusty garden tools, I can just turn to them and say, “Do it, you cowards. It’s nothing compared to watching more than half of War Horse.”
But in the interests of preserving my own physical and mental health, at this point I’m going to have to jump forward to the last few minutes so I can euthanize this most dark and depressing period of my life.
110:00-126:00 The orchestra mutinies and tears John Williams limb from limb. Chaos ensues as a result of the power vacuum and the orchestra all cannibalizes each other. The entire state of Vermont moves in on the set to extract all the extra sap leaking out of the sides of the movie to render into maple syrup, but they don’t have enough trucks to transport it all back. War Horse becomes Gelatin horse.