Welcome to 2015.
Last year was a very great year for the film world and it ended with some very cool releases. I am working on a feature on the Top 10 movies for 2014. (It should be ready soon, “Fingers Crossed”)
I just couldn’t wait to start my 2015 movie year with American Sniper, the pre-release trailer I saw last year was too good to ignore and definitely had me psyched about seeing this title.
American Sniper details the true live events of US Navy Seals sniper, Chris Kyle who is credited with 160 kills during his four tours of duty and how he struggles with his relationship with the war and how he manages to handle it with his wife and kids once he has returned home.
I recall starting 2014 with Lone Survivor (that starred Mark Wahlberg. Taylor Kitsch and Ben Foster) another true story about US NAVY SEALS which was quite good but I hadn’t started this blog then so I have no review for that. (Anyways see my TOP FIVE: 2014 MOVIES YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN BY NOW)
As usual I had high expectations for this movie considering that the teaser had really left me wanting to see more.
Bradley Cooper got to star as Chris Kyle and if you ask me I would score him a perfect 10 for that role. Anyone who is familiar with movies like Limitless, American Hustle, The Hangover and Silver linings playbook needs to see Bradley’s performance here so as to fully appreciate how versatile of an actor he is. I am always more than impressed when an actor goes through some form of physical transformation just to play a role. In this movie it was obvious that he had to put on some weight so as to fully embody the persona of Chris Kyle at 30 years. Regardless, I feel his acting was as good as always. I am not just saying this because I am a fan but it’s the truth… Plain and Simple.
I am a real sucker for movies about soldiers because they usual portray a lot of relatively realistic bravely and heroism and this particular title wasn’t an exception. The story was well told taking into consideration aspects of Chris’ life before he joined the military and his life with his family as well. It’s not everyday that we get an inside scoop of how and why these brave soldiers decided they wanted to put their lives on the line and the kind of emotional and psychological battles they have to fight and live with for the rest of their lives. Believe me when I say this 2hrs 12mins film was more than just about shooting people. Enough focus was given to Chris Kyle’s family life and struggles as well.
Although there have been some controversies surrounding the accuracy of the events told in this film I still feel it was well directed. It’s easy to follow the progress of the story and events without having to ask the usual “What just happened” or “What is going on” questions. I believe all the action scenes had the right amounts of elements needed to make them thrilling, entertaining and a bit emotional as well.
I personally in a way agree with some of the critics of this film who think this title some how idolizes a man who enjoyed killing Iraqis. Yes… the whole story pitted America against Iraq depicting all Iraqis as villains… this I strongly feel was wrong. Although I might not fully understand the complexities associated with this America versus Iraq thing I still didn’t like the fact that this film seemed to portray even children as being villains. (My mind though)
I was also not impressed with the way the film ended. It would have been nice showing exactly how Chris Kyle died. Instead of just pointing out his death. I am tempted to think it was left out deliberately so as not to void his war hero persona in a way. But from what I have read about his death I don’t think that would have in anyway negatively influenced the strengths of the American Sniper.
That is why I am scoring this movie 7/10. I enjoyed it well enough and it had me interested and at the edge of my seat from the start till that not so impressive climax.
I think everyone likes the idea of a dead on accurate sniper and would like to watch this film even without paying attention to the underlying themes of propaganda and chauvinism.
Nonetheless, this is certainly a good movie that I am sure everyone would enjoy seeing more than just once because; everyone to a large extent appreciates bravery and heroism. This film certainly portrays a lot of that.
Do well to see this movie and find out if you agree with me or not.