Number of Times Seen – 2 (7 Aug 2009 and 18 Feb 2014)
Brief Synopsis – The struggles and hardships of a group of US soldiers in Iraq who are part of a bomb squad.
My Take on it – I personally have served in the military in a forward position in “enemy” territory and although thankfully my experiences were much tamer than the ones portrayed in this movie, watching it brings back some of those memories.
This movie is a VERY powerful movie with an anti-war stance (like most great war movies; Platoon (1986), Saving Private Ryan (1998) and Black Hawk Down (2001) are all examples of the genre) that generally are only made years after the conflict has ended.
The choice to make it sooner is a very good one since it gives the audience an idea of the difficulties and hardships that military men and their families must deal with on a day to day basis.
Soldiers serving in such places as depicted here need to find a way to survive in that world and when they finish their time there, they need to find a way to reintegrate themselves back into the normal world. This is not an easy thing to do and in the more than dozen years since the war in the Middle East began, there are more and more instances of men and women coming back and having problems readjusting to their own lives and families.
This movie is written and directed expertly and it gives the viewer a (to an extent) true view of what happens in Iraq and Afghanistan and credit for both of these things go mainly to writer Mark Boal and Director Katherine Bigelow.
The realism and tension of the place is felt in just about every scene and as difficult as some scenes are to watch, you don’t want to turn it off.
Although this wasn’t the best movie of 2009, (it’s close), I think it won Best Picture that year because of the way it shows the world the reality of what is happening to troops stationed in The Middle East.
Winner of 6 (of 9) Oscars – Best Picture, Director (Bigelow being the first female Director to ever win), Screenplay, Film Editing, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing.
It lost Actor (Jeremy Renner), Cinematography and Original Score
Bottom Line – Very gripping (anti-) war movie that tries to show the truth about war and its effects on soldiers during and afterwards. Not THE best movie of the year, but amongst them. Highly recommended!
Rating – Oscar Worthy
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