Posted on 11/07/09 10:03 PM
The Men Who Stare At Goats -- Review
By Odin Halvorson, November 7th, 2009.
As the pre-movie credits began to roll I sat back in the seat and popped the top of the bottle of apple sparkler I had smuggled into the theater along with a bag of veggie-chips and waited with baited breath for this movie that has been occupying my thoughts for nearly half a year.
I must first admit that I love all of George Clooney's previous work, from the Oceans series to Burn After Reading, Still nothing could have prepared me for glorious wonder that lay ahead.
The opening scenes showed us the dull and uneventful life of one Bob Wilton, (Ewan McGregor).
We are introduced to the basics of the story with a captivating voice-over by Bob Wilton. This well thought out narrative continues on throughout the entire movie and does an excellent job of helping the plot evolve along at a steady pace without disrupting the flow of the story itself.
The story revolves around Bob Wilton who is a struggling and not-so-bright reporter from Michigan who is dumped by his wife for a man with one arm and then decided that to prove himself he needs to seek adventure, which he does by shipping of to Iraq in the hopes of making a big story break and proving to his wife and himself that he has something going for him.
While waiting to cross the actual boarder into Iraq however Bob has a surprising encounter with Lyn Cassady, (George Clooney), who soon confides that he was a member of a secret Army soldiers known as 'Warrior monks' or as Lyn calls them, the 'Jedi Warriors' a group of psychic spies created by the army to investigate and if possible come to control the powers of the supernatural.
The movie is filled with numerous artfully cast flashbacks which allow us glimpses into Lyn's past as Lyn himself recounts the story of the Jedi warriors training at Fort Bragg.
In the first of these flashbacks we are introduced to Bill Django, (Jeff Bridges), Lyn's former teacher and mentor and the former leader of the 'Jedi'.
The movie continues as Lyn proceeds into Iraq on a secret mission with Bob tagging close behind. During the escapades they run into a rock in the middle of an empty desert, disperse clouds with their minds, get themselves kidnapped and are eventually picked up by a group of private security contractors.
The movie continues from here with a delightfully dark and satirical view of the security contractors role in the middle-east as well as a humbling look at the horrors that the war has brought to the innocent citizens of the middle-eastern countries.
Lyn and Bob continue to progress on their mission until a land-mine brings them to a sudden and jarring halt. They survive, but soon after Lyn confesses that the mission he was on was given to him by a vision of Bill Django, his old mentor and not by the government.
From here everything seems to take a turn from the worst as they spend a cold and perilous night in the desert without food, shelter or water. The next day however they are rescued by the most unlikely of sources; the Jedi have returned.
Now in order to allow you to keep your own opinion of the movie I have omitted various details, but if what I have told you so-far doesn't make you want to instantly go out and get yourself a ticket to the earliest showing, then nothing will.
In short this movie is quite possibly the funniest, and most thought provoking piece of satire that has come to the silver screen in the last ten years. It is a must see and is guaranteed to give you a look at war and the Army that you never would have expected, and that I can assure you; you will never forget.