“This is a special project of mine, unlike anything I’ve ever done before,” said the creator of the fan-edit, Tom van der Linden. “What started off as a regular essay on Dunkirk’s visual storytelling and its influences from silent films, slowly turned into what is by far my most experimental video to date. It began when I re-edited a few clips from Dunkirk into a silent film style to compare it to existing silent films that Nolan mentioned as his inspirations (and also; because it was just really fun to do). I was amazed at how well it translated and how well it highlighted Nolan’s use of camera angles, body language, facial expressions and staging in Dunkirk’s storytelling; a great use of visuals both in portraying minor conflicts as well as in telling the story as a whole,” he continued.
“This last point presented an interesting challenge for my video essay,” Van der Linden continued, “because translating individual scenes into silent ones is relatively easy; I think there are many recent films that have scenes with strong visual storytelling, but I can’t think of many films that can be turned into a silent film in their entirety and still work. Dunkirk however, I believe, is one of those films. For a second I considered re-editing the entire film, but because that would obviously lead to copyright issues I decided to transform it into a short that showcases Dunkirk’s strength in visual storytelling in both the small details as well as the story as a whole. I tried as much as possible to maintain the essence of Dunkirk, but I also wanted it to stand on its own which meant I had to pay a lot of attention to its internal logic and do some creative editing.”
The Like Stories Of Old black and white fan edit of Dunkirk can be viewed below.
Many have considered Nolan’s film as a masterful retelling of British soldiers on the French shores of Dunkirk during WWII. This black and white reimagining only adds to the visual element of the original movie, giving an experience that has to be seen to be believed.