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War Horse

Recommended by Kevin McRoberts

A FIRST World War story with a difference, War Horse is based on the Children’s Laureate Michael Morgurgo’s 1982 novel, and tells the story of a remarkable friendship between a horse Joey and a young boy Albert (Jeremy Irvine).

They are forcefully parted when Joey is “called up” by the British cavalry and is shipped to France where he gets caught up in enemy fire and ends up serving both sides.

As Joey faces death and disease, Albert begins his own remarkable journey, lying about his age to enlist in the hope of finding and bringing home his beloved horse.

It’s sentimental, thought-provoking stuff, with numerous heart-tugging moments, such as Joey being taken from Albert and the horse running through barbed wire.

While a few scenes are difficult to watch, such as tired and weary horses being put down, the 12A certificate means the battle scenes are less gruesome than they could have been, and the deaths of several characters are implied and mostly unseen.

However, anyone even mildy emotional would be advised to have the tissues handy, particularly for the climax in No Man’s Land.