The Hurt Locker Reviews
This movie follows 3 soldiers in the Iraq War. They are trained to disarm bombs and they face the threat of death every day as anyone could try to kill them as seen in the beginning of the movie.
In most war films, armies face each other directly and battle. In this movie though, the enemy hides in plain sight and the soldiers have no way of knowing who can be trying to kill them. Often when they disarm bombs, several possibly dangerous people watch them and any one of them could try to kill them as is shown in the intro. This of course creates conflict between the troops and this movie explains some of the conflict that arises between them.
The scenes where they disarm bombs are very tense because the viewer knows that the bombs could go off at any second. This is made clear from the memorable opening scene. The movie also brings in factors which helps to raise tension even more. It shows several possibly dangerous onlookers, a man driving a taxi within the bomb site, and a man holding a remote which may possibly set off the bombs. The shootout scene near the middle isn't that impressive compared to other scenes in the movie In terms of originality and suspense but it doesn't take up too much time to begin with.
The acting is pretty good. Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie, and Brian Geraghty were the main actors and they carried the movie well. They don't have too much of a variety in terms of their facial expressions and emotions but they still do their best in the movie and they show that they are talented actors.
A common problem found in many war films is the lack of character development. Like many other movies of the genre, this movie also suffers from that problem. The movie doesn't give us something big which makes us care for any of the characters. This is a common problem which arises in many war films nowadays and I hope that it will be fixed sometime in the future.
Despite the lack of character development, this is still a great war film which contains some pretty memorable and original scenes which hold a lot of tension often. It is definitely worth a watch and it is one of the better war films in recent memory.
Kathryn Bigelow directs the film with a sense of raw and gritty viscerality, especially when the story necessitates intense action sequences. Bigelow understands how the war works: there's no huge shootouts with running-and-gunning and constant explosions from entire militaries here. Between the handheld camerawork and the general lack of a noticeable musical score, the EOD bomb disposal scenes are filmed in a way that feels like a guitar string is being wound too tight, and could snap at any minute. They're slow paced, but deliberately, and effectively so. It's as if we're stuck down in the sandy streets of Baghdad with these soldiers, and there's no telling who's going to come out of each mission in one piece.
This Best Picture and Best Director winning film (Bigelow is the first, and currently the only, female to win both of these awards) is simultaneously a phenomenal war film, with perhaps the strongest onscreen portrayal of the Iraq War to date, and a fascinating character study of the effects of said war. The Hurt Locker is a must-see.