Three Kings (Snap Case Packaging)
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George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, Ice Cube, and Spike Jonze (director of Being John Malkovich) play a quartet of U.S. soldiers who, disillusioned by Operation Desert Storm, decide to steal $23 million in gold hijacked from Kuwait by Saddam Hussein's army. Getting the bullion out of an Iraqi stronghold is easy; keeping it is a potentially lethal proposition. By the end of their mercenary mission, the Americans can no longer ignore wartime atrocities (and neither can we--the film is boldly unflinching), and conscience demands their aid to Iraqi rebels abandoned by President George Bush's fickle wartime policy. This is serious stuff indeed, but Russell infuses Three Kings with a keen sense of the absurd, and the entire film is an exercise in breathtaking visual ingenuity. Despite a conventional ending that's mildly disappointing for such a brashly original film, Three Kings conveys the brutal madness of war while making you laugh out loud at the insanity. --Jeff Shannon
Top Customer Reviews
"What's it like?" they ask. You can't say it's a comedy, because plenty of people won't find it funny. Can you say it's a heist film? Only if you're narrow-minded. An action movie? Yeah, maybe, but this isn't comic book action here.
Soldiers at the tail end of the Gulf War get a lead on a hidden stash of gold and decide to find it and take it home. What happens to them along the way changes their objectives and changes their lives in profound ways. Director David O Russell has crafted a movie that SEEMS to be aimless, changing directions with the wind, but is actually a movie with a certain destination, taking a more realistic approach to arrive there. A good example of this narrative philosophy is pointed out by Russell in his excellent and illuminating commentary track: in one scene Clooney is rushing pell-mell through an underground bunker and collides with another man rushing to get out. There's no "point" to it other than that these distracting things happen in real life all the time, just not usually in the movies.
The DVD's price is good and it's PACKED with so many extras (all of them interesting and worthwhile, too) that it's hard to pass up THREE KINGS for purchasing. Very much recommended.
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It starts off fairly simply. At the end of Desert Storm a group of soldiers find a map showing where stolen Kuwaiti gold was being kept so they go get it. What was extraordinary was the way that the Iraqi soldiers actually helped them but would not let them help any of the locals. Orders from Saddam they said.
However, seeing the injustice being meted out by the Iraqi soldiers our four heroes (Clooney, Wahlberg, Cube and Jonze) decide to intervene. Things do not go well as Wahlberg is captured and tortured and all their vehicles are destroyed.
The torture scene is poignant. Wahlberg and his torturer have much in common: they are fathers, they joined the army to give their families a better standard of living, except that the torturer's one year old son was killed in a US bombing raid and his wife lost her legs. When later on Wahlberg is rescued and he has a chance to kill his torturer, his decision adds all the more depth to the story.
Although Saddam is villified in this movie, the story seems to take no sides. This is not about heroes and glory but about the struggle that everyone has with their own oppression - whether it is a tyrant, a poor job or dumb bosses. There are some very touching moments and some great humour. All the actors are very convincing (including all the Iraqi extras) and portay the ambiguity of people caught up in something out of their control.
This is a very good movie and will keep you thinking. The anatomical "shots" are an interesting feature but are insignificant against the storyline. A good movie to add to your collection and talk about with your friends. Loads of extras on the DVD too!
I didn't watch the movie for another few years until my friend got it on DVD and having nothing else to do, I decided to watch it again, hoping I would have a different point of view after watching it for a second time. And boy, am I glad I did!
Three Kings is a great movie with; I believe, a deeper meaning. The basic plot is about 4 soldiers in the Gulf War who discover a map on a prisoner after the war is over. It turns out that the map shows the location of $23 million worth of Kuwaiti bullion stolen by the Iraqis. So these 4 soldiers set about getting themselves a nice little bonus. However, upon retrieving the gold, Sgt. Archie Gates (Clooney) and his men are faced with a dilemma: take the gold and allow innocent Iraqi people to be slaughtered by the Iraqi soldiers OR take the gold, try & save the Iraqi people. Obviously the second option comes along with a lot more risk. Gates' moral conscience takes over and he decides upon the latter, citing that "necessity had just changed" and so on goes the movie.
I think David Russell did a fantastic job directing the movie, and getting his message across, which I believe was that President George Bush (Sr.) left the Iraqi people to die.
When America won the Gulf war, President Bush told the people to rise against Saddam and that they would have the full support of the United States of America. Whereas in reality, Bush didn't give a rats a@!Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Strange, but in the theater when this was released I did not really like this that much. It was okay. Read morePublished 27 days ago by Pachyderm
My favorite David O Russell film, and one of my favorite war films. It is sad and funny at the same time! The extras on the DVD are also plentiful.Published 2 months ago by mikereview
This is supposed to be a comedy but it's overshadowed by the guts, gore and fecal satire. If you enjoy watching slaughter and spurting blood, this movie may be for you. Read morePublished 2 months ago by kenc
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|Worth pre-ordering with the current cost of $17.49?||
Umm...as of right now (May 2013) the DVD costs $5.26. Heck yeah, it's worth it. Maybe buy two, one for a friend.
May 22, 2013 by Allen Smalling | See all 2 posts
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