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Customer Review

54 of 72 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, far fetched, and a tad aggravating, January 12, 2010
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This review is from: The Hurt Locker (DVD)
I wanted to like this movie...I really, really did. I had seen and read alot of hype for it, rave reviews, and alot of talk of Oscars. After watching it however, I can't see why.

There have been alot of war movies over the years, but there has yet to be anything worthwhile watching for Iraq. This is not Platoon, the Dirty Dozen, the Battle of the Bulge, it isn't even Inglorious Basterds. True, other Iraq fair has fallen flat or just plain sucked. This wasn't as bad (Over There) and didn't have an idiotic and misguided political statement (Redacted...Marc Cuban burn in hell) but it wasn't all that good.

There's the typical military irregularities, such as uniforms (US flags are worn on the right shoulder of soldiers but in the movie they're either on both or none), equipment (magazines disappear and reappear between scenes, and the 6 wheeled APC used by US soldiers is in fact an APC used by the South Africans, not Americans) and overall impossible situations (a single vehicle by itself? REALLY?). These SERIOUSLY detract from the movie, so anyone not familiar with anything military get a somewhat twisted inaccurate view of operations in country.

The storyline overall really has no point, as all it is are daily missions, almost vignettes, of the EOD team's daily ops.

The last 15 minutes is the only thing that saves this movie and gives it a star. the acting, emotion and theme (I won't spoil it) would've made this an AMAZING movie, had it been a constant throughout. Sure, there's small snippets of emotion and feeling, but at times too brief to really feel it.

Yes, I can see this movie receiving some nominations, such as best actor for Jeremy Renner, but to win it I think is a bit much. As an active duty soldier with over 8 years service and 2 deployments, this movie just seemed lackluster and some of the situations too far fetched to really appreciate the movie, although it wasn't the total crapfest of other movies (Home of the Brave)
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Showing 1-9 of 9 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 12, 2010 5:54:30 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 12, 2010 5:55:33 PM PST
Hey Mike you make some good points and thank you very much for your service. When you mentioned the far fetched scenarios, I have at least one in my mind that made me question how good the movie was (the part where the squad of guys goes out on their own). Overall I really like the movie though, although it has been the only movie I have seen about the war in Iraq or Afghanistan for that matter. I refuse to watch Stop Loss or Over There which both looked like they played into the hollywood cliches. Ultimately I can't pass any judgments on the authenticity of the equipment/uniforms but I take your word for it because you've had experience with it. Maybe if I was in the military I may have thought the same. Anyway good review (although I liked the movie a lot haha) and thanks again for your service.

Posted on Jan 13, 2010 7:02:26 PM PST
Rob Gordon says:
Film irregularities aren't always enough to kill a movie. Look at the magic windshield of Twister.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2010 7:27:10 PM PST
A. Customer says:
yeah...i gotta admit I didn't like that movie either..."Guy must put thing in that thing, guy meets girl, guy loves girl, guy puts thing in that thing, guy and girl live happily ever after"...wasn't a big fan, and I really like Bill Paxton...dammit Bill!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 13, 2010 7:29:04 PM PST
A. Customer says:
I appreciate the thanks! Stop Loss isn't that bad to be (now ex)wife made me watch it with her, and before I did, I found out it was from MTV...I figured it'd be pretty slanted, but really, it wasn't that bad...the ending is kind of a piss off, making you want to go "REALLY?!?!?!?!?!?" but it is worth a rent. It actually depicts some issues of returning to society that are stereotypical, but do happen frequently. Again, thanks for the appreciation! :)

Posted on Jan 14, 2010 2:01:18 AM PST
D. Knox says:
Took two friends to this movie who were both Iraq veterans of the period they were depicting. Granted, they didn't work demolitions, but they were still there. They said it was very close to what it was like to being over there. One, in fact, was wanting to re-enlist after he saw it (which is the main theme of the film in the first place). Just for that alone, I give this film my highest rating of the year. Every movie has inaccuracies. And if you know anything about making movies, you'll know that sometimes they have to use altered uniforms when the military doesn't endorse the film. Look at the TV show "The Shield." They had to wear their badges on the wrong side of their uniforms because the LAPD wouldn't endorse the show. Platoon wasa movie for its time and I don't think any other war movie before or since should be compared to it. You can't even compare Black Hawk Down since it was a recreation of an actual battle. But The Hurt Locker is easily the best Iraq-themed film I have seen. And can we PLEASE acknowledge that such a taut film was directed by a woman? James Cameron's ex-wife no less? In my opinion it blew Avatar away.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 25, 2010 11:46:14 AM PST
Maclen says:
I didn't care for this film. It was very repetitive, one EOD team's daily mission again and again and again and again, much like the war itself, no real point to it. Maybe that was the message here. I'm also a veteran (Vietnam), and I watched this film to be entertained and was far more bored than entertained or informed.

Posted on Jan 30, 2010 9:19:40 PM PST
Thanks for the review, Mike. I think you hit it right on the head. I read all the rave reviews ahead of seeing the movie, and was disappointed with it. Acadamy Award winner? I think not. Falls into the P.C. category, ala Crash and Brokeback Mountain.

Posted on Nov 28, 2012 8:16:12 PM PST
I strongly disagree with your review. There is indeed a story line, subtle until the end. Remember the opening lines, War is a drug...? Indeed it was for James! Like many, many other soldiers in every war, he returned to war. Sebastian Junger's book "War" explains why men go back. Your comments are really minor to non- military viewers! Sorry, but it's true. Thanks for your service! The movie is very gripping and camera work, lighting etc were excellent. Deserves at least a four or five star rating.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 29, 2012 6:47:31 PM PST
A. Customer says:
I appreciate your respectful view, and I return it in kind. You are right sir, in that my view is somewhat skewed. 10+ years in the Army, I can't watch military movies without an (obvious) biased view that would differ from a civilian. Ok, I can admit from a cinematic point of view, it was well shot, and the casting was well done (Renner has been an underdog favorite actor of mine for years, I do admit the one good thing about this movie is he has now become one of Hollywood's go to action actors). So I can agree that as a military movie, which is what I viewed it as, it sucks, but if I were to distance myself from that and see it at face value it wouldn't be bad, but in all honesty that's something I can't do. Thank you for the feedback!
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