Thursday, September 03, 2009

Hurt Locker Review

The Hurt Locker

This was a good film by the director of Point Break, Kathry Bigelow, also a good film. But these are not great films. I won't go into Point Break which I enjoyed immensely.

Hurt Locker has some wonderfully suspenseful moments but you never tear off the nail you're chewing. Why? I put it down partly to plot. You need the plot to vice-grip the characters and you need to the tension of your heroes' predicaments. This happens but the web does not ultimately stick. There are great scenes of Sergeant First Class William James the team leader of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) in a bombsuit; great suspense but perhaps as a result of Sgt James' total not giving a shinola, we too don't "mind" if he's blown to "Jesus" as he himself says. I won't get technical. It is a worthwhile film if you're into war movies. It is not in the league or psychological depth of Full Metal Jacket, itself which is not in the league of an earlier true masterpiece of Kubrick's: Paths of Glory. Some cultural observations:

  • The bombsuit reminds us of Kubrick's 2001 with the breathing sounds and while the ordinance in the film has been praised I can say that the way it carries off does not always make us jump. The sound-design of the film should have been better even if it meant imitating the breathing in the spacesuits in 2001, which adds a suspense drawn from a kind of hypnoticness.
  • The bomb disposal robot is similar to Wallee. To what degree was the film of Wallee a lament for the mistakes made after the invasion of Iraq?

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