Fury over 'crass' Dunkirk NBA trailer that likens basketball to war

Ben Arnold
The horrors of basketball… Dunkirk promo shown during NBA playoffs is getting flack – Credit: Warner Bros

Sporting analogies are often used in business, but should they be used to contextualise the horrors of war?

Perhaps not, as the marketing folk behind forthcoming Christopher Nolan movie ‘Dunkirk’ are starting to discover.

Re-editing the movie’s trailer to help advertise both the film itself and the NBA playoffs in a handy, one-hit package, a clip from the movie aired over the weekend, playing out with a parade of NBA stars doling out some inspirational vibes.

“One turn over, one miss, one loss… you think it’s all over. But it’s not. Put it behind you. Keep moving. Play on,” they read, over the footage of soldiers fighting for their lives.

Check it out below…

It appears to directly compare the struggles of an impending sporting defeat with the events of the miraculous Dunkirk evacuation during World War II.

And while some Harry Styles fans were just happy to catch another glimpse of the One Direction star, it’s gone down amazingly badly with everyone else, responses ranging from amused disbelief to just plain anger.

“Thousands of civilian and military British people risked their lives to save almost half a million soldiers surrounded by Nazis so that their sacrifice and struggle could be shown as having something to do with throwing balls,” added one YouTube user.

Thus far, the NBA has made no comment on the clip.

The movie, starring Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy and Mark Rylance – and Harry Styles – arrives on July 21.

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