What’s Real & What’s Fabricated in ‘Dunkirk’ the Movie

Many Americans may not be familiar with the rescue expedition in Dunkirk, France, because it took place before the United States entered World War II. However, this event was a crucial moment in the war. Nearly half a million soldiers were being bombarded with bullets by the German air force, called Luftwaffe. If these soldiers were killed or captured, it’s possible the Nazis could have taken all of Europe.

Director Christopher Nolan (Inception, Memento) created characters for his new movie, Dunkirk, that were inspired by real soldiers, but they are all fictional. The story is told from the point of view of three main characters: a pilot, a private citizen with a boat and a soldier on land. For the most part, however, all the events in the film are based on fact. Click through this slideshow to see what we determined was real.