Lone Survivor (2013)
You will laugh, and you will cry. They live, they fight, and they die.
I was very excited to see Lone Survivor. When I learned of the movie months ago, I knew it would be one that I had to see. Recently, I heard from numerous people that the film was amazing, and that just made me want to see it more. These days, if Mark Wahlberg is in a movie, you can basically expect gold.
The film is based on the book with the same title which was written by Marcus Luttrell and is based on his true story. It’s about a group of Navy SEALS on a covert operation in Afghanistan that goes horribly wrong. Four SEALS are left severely outnumbered and outgunned and behind enemy lines. Unable to make radio contact, they are forced to stand together as one and try desperately to fight the local Taliban for their survival.
The movie was directed by Peter Berg and the noteworthy cast includes Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Ben Foster, Eric Bana, Emile Hirsch, Yousif Azami, Ali Suliman, Alexander Ludwig, and Jerry Ferrara.
I had vaguely heard of the mission that was portrayed in Lone Survivor, but ultimately, I hardly new any of the details before watching the film. I’m not sure how much of the story went by the book, and what was fictionalized for pure entertainment purposes. I have not read the book, but it would be interesting to see how it differs from the movie.
Lone Survivor is a superb depiction of the camaraderie and brotherhood that is commonly found in the Navy SEALS. The actors walked the walk, and talked the talk. They were large, bulky instruments that were trained to kill and trained to survive. They fight like soldiers and they curse like soldiers. This film does not edit itself for a lighter rating. It’s as real as I’ve ever seen. Prepare yourself to be shocked.
This movie has some of the most insanely realistic and severely intense battle scenes that I have ever seen in a film. Although I knew that I was in a theatre watching a film, it was as if I was watching real footage of actual soldiers at war, and not actors pretending for a camera.
Lone Survivor is a trip into hostile territory. The movie reminded me of how I felt about Saving Private Ryan (1998) when I saw it for the first time. It’s an epic achievement. The film changes the way that you look at the war movie genre. It raises the bar and leaves huge shoes to fill for any future war movie. It’s a game changer. I have a feeling that this movie will be hard to beat for years to come. The genre has now been reestablished.
The cast was a force to be reckoned with. Everyone was awesome. Wahlberg stood out above the rest and he continues to add to the arsenal of reasons why I like him. He has become one of my favorite actors. He is a consistent entertainer in the movie world and that is a rare thing in this day and age.
This movie should be an Oscar contender. It would be a crime if it didn’t win something. It would be an excellent way to honor all of the Navy SEALS that fought for their brothers standing next to them.
I rate this movie a 9 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Buy.
Note: Lone Survivor could deserve a higher rating, but it has to live up to the test of time before it gets one from me.
There was a bit of a disturbance in the densely populated theatre where I watched this film. A man in the same row as mine was yelling obscenities during the first half of the movie. He started to violently strike the seats in front of him before he was finally removed from the premises. I was unable to give my full attention to the first part of the movie because of this distraction. It was unfortunate, but when I watch the movie for a second time, my rating could possibly change.
Lone Survivor (2013) (Click on the title for my full review.)
This cast in a film based on a true story about a NAVY SEAL operation gone bad. What else is there for me to say? I’ll see it.
The film is set to release on 12/27/13.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)
With the release of The Wolverine (2013) this weekend, I thought that it was about time that I watched X-Men Origins: Wolverine. I have seen all of the other X-Men movies and I used to watch the cartoon as a kid, so I’m not sure why I waited so long to watch this movie.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine tells the story of Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) as a child and his earlier life prior to the other X-Men films. Wolverine and his brother Victor Creed (Liev Schreiber), both mutants, are forced to leave home together at a young age. They fight through a number of wars together until they are recruited by Colonel Stryker (Danny Huston) to become part of an elite unit made up of all mutants. Eventually Wolverine disagrees with what the unit stands for and decides to leave. He moves away, falls in love with a woman, and leads a simple life. Time passes and Wolverine’s life gets turned upside down when his old unit wants him back.
After watching this film, I am sort of kicking myself for not watching it sooner. It does an excellent job of showing where Wolverine came from and why he is the way that he is in the other films. After the movie, I gained a greater respect for Jackman and his Wolverine character.
This is my favorite X-Men movie so far. What I especially liked about the film is that it concentrated on the life of one of the X-Men instead of overflowing the movie with tons of mutant characters with too many stories to go around. This made it possible for greater character development and helped to create a more meaningful story. Of course, there are a number of X-Men characters in the film, but they didn’t try to tell the story of each one of them.
Gambit/Remy LeBeau was one of my favorite X-Men characters when I was a kid, and it was fun to finally see his character in a live action film.
Jackman and Schreiber both brought a level of fierce intensity to their characters that were very exciting to watch. This, in conjunction with the solid supporting performance by Huston and the film’s awesome special effects helped to make X-Men Origins: Wolverine the sharpest X-Men movie in the box.
I rate this movie an 8.5 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Buy.
Click on the link below to see a picture and read about the time when my wife and I and some friends got into a fight with Wolverine and Iron Man.
Note: Jackman and Schreiber were both in Kate & Leopold (2001) together.
If you enjoyed X-Men Origins: Wolverine, then you will probably like The Wolverine (2013).