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Private Peaceful (12)

Private Peaceful (12)


Set in the fields of Devon and the WW1 battlefields of Flanders, two brothers fall for the same girl while contending with the pressures of their feudal family life, the war, and the price of courage and cowardice.

The critical consensus

There isn’t enough that’s vital or fresh about Private Peaceful to make it noteworthy.

**(*)(*)(*)Paul Gallagher, The List, 06/09/2012

It’s left to the leads to keep us engaged, a tall order given their film’s old-fashioned, fusty feel.

**(*)(*)(*)Neil Smith, Total Film, 02/10/2012

Pat O’Connor gives the story a sturdy if rather old-fashioned treatment.

***(*)(*)Siobhan Synnot, The Scotsman, 07/10/2012

It’s nothing that hasn’t been seen in dozens of better dramas.

**(*)(*)(*)Alistair Harkness, The Scotsman, 11/10/2012

Minor pacing gripes aside, this is a moving tale about humanity’s darkest depths.

***(*)(*)Hugh Langley, Little White Lies, 11/10/2012

Private Peaceful is a small-scale story in essence, which works efficiently on the non-epic scale in which it's presented.

***(*)(*)Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian, 11/10/2012

With the feel of prestige telly, it's nicely done, sweet and moving.

***(*)(*)Angie Errigo, Empire Online, 12/10/2012

MacKay and Jack O'Connell give affecting performances, though the film is sluggish in its early stages and cartoonish about the class struggle.

**(*)(*)(*)Anthony Quinn, The Independent, 12/10/2012

Class conflict, broken hearts, self-sacrifice and the muddy, senseless folly of war are all lightly touched upon in a starchy, old-fashioned drama.

**(*)(*)(*)Allan Hunter, Daily Express, 12/10/2012

This is warfare and poverty recast as snug escapism: a very Heartbeat kind of heartbreak.

**(*)(*)(*)Robbie Collin, The Telegraph, 12/10/2012

It's well meaning, episodic and destined to be shown in school history lessons.

Nicholas Barber, The Independent on Sunday, 14/10/2012

It's perhaps more TV than cinema, but O'Connor directs with a firm hand, and children will learn valuable lessons from it.

Philip French, The Observer, 14/10/2012

Where and when?

General release. Check local listings for show times.

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