Based on the celebrated WWI memoir by Vera Brittain, Testament of Youth is a bold adaptation of a cherished text that features an eye-catching lead performance from rising star Alicia Vikander (also seen at the IFI this month in Ex_Machina). Vera comes of age during the early years of the 20th century, fighting to convince others that she is worthy of a place at Oxford University, falling for a friend of her brother’s who shares her literary interests and then having her dreams shattered when war is declared.
As she sees the men around her go off to fight, she is determined to make her own contribution and signs on as a nurse, where she bears witness to the desperate state those fighting men return in. Testament of Youth serves as an unflinching depiction of the horrors of the war and an acknowledgement of the vital role women played in it. (Notes by Michael Hayden.)
★★★★ The Irish Times ★★★★ Irish Independent ★★★★ The Telegraph
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