The Hurt Locker

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The Hurt Locker

Postby Dave Johnson » Tue Jan 12, 2010 8:10 am

Great reviews gentlemen. The Hurt Locker is easily the best picture of the year, taut, thrilling, complex and bad-ass.

Mancini might get on my Christmas card list for this line:

I didn't think a 21st century war film absent self-righteous moral hectoring or a presentation of the US military as a good ol' boys club whose membership is restricted to inbred homicidal miscreants and developmentally disabled 8-year-olds stuck in the bodies of men was possible.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Dan Mancini » Tue Jan 12, 2010 8:50 am

I thought I was just stating the obvious. But, hey, I'm always happy to receive a Christmas card.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Steve T Power » Tue Jan 12, 2010 12:11 pm

Taut, thrilling, bad-ass, yes, but complex? Not so sure about that one.

I dug it - and it was definitely in my top 10, but i really don't understand where all the acclaim is coming from - it must be an American thing.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby cdouglas » Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:08 pm

Steve T Power wrote:Taut, thrilling, bad-ass, yes, but complex? Not so sure about that one.

I dug it - and it was definitely in my top 10, but i really don't understand where all the acclaim is coming from - it must be an American thing.


I agree completely. I found the film to be an excellent dose of action-packed cinema, but I really don't think that it has anything particularly new, relevatory or challenging to say about modern warfare. Perhaps the shock of a war movie with brains and a lack of preachy pretense is getting to people. That's not a dig at the two reviews on the site (which are well-written and make a good case for the film's virtues), but I just don't see how this is the best film of the year.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Dan Mancini » Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:39 pm

Steve T Power wrote:Taut, thrilling, bad-ass, yes, but complex? Not so sure about that one.

Perhaps rich is a better word.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Dave Johnson » Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:54 pm

I thought the panicked confusion of "anyone might be an enemy" was something I hadn't seen before. Any guy with a cell phone can take out a city block--that was definitely a new wrinkle in modern combat and this movie transmitted that tension extraordinarily.

How do you handle the suspicious onlookers who may or may not blow your unit to kingdom come? A mistake means an international incident so choose wisely. That's astounding pressure, its effects on the soldiers vivid. Then you've got the grotesque, otherworldly horror of the body bomb and the gut-wrenching final defusal scene. In all honesty--I found it pretty unique and challenging.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Dan Mancini » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:09 pm

Dave Johnson wrote:How do you handle the suspicious onlookers who may or may not blow your unit to kingdom come? A mistake means an international incident so choose wisely.

Exactly. And that aspect of the movie was quite visceral to me.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Steve T Power » Tue Jan 12, 2010 7:13 pm

Dan Mancini wrote:
Dave Johnson wrote:How do you handle the suspicious onlookers who may or may not blow your unit to kingdom come? A mistake means an international incident so choose wisely.

Exactly. And that aspect of the movie was quite visceral to me.


All i got from it was, "Anyone could be an enemy", which pops up in pretty much any feature dedicated to the Middle East conflicts. Visceral is definitely a word i'd use though.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby BenSaylor » Thu Jan 14, 2010 3:20 pm

In terms of character study alone, The Hurt Locker is a singular work. Jeremy Renner's naturalistic lead performance, combined with Mark Boal's script, provides a very compelling portrait of an insatiable danger junkie. (not for nothing is the film's epigraph "War is a drug.") James is highly skilled at defusing bombs. He also really, really gets a thrill from it, a rush that civilian life can't provide him, which is what made the final shot of The Hurt Locker one of the more memorable closers in recent memory to me. Standing in contrast to James is Anthony Mackie's Sanborn (another terrific performance), who is, as Roger Ebert points out in his review, also a professional, but with an entirely different attitude than James. Without propagandizing, the film manages to make you consider the insanity of war, and the different ways in which those who must fight it choose to deal with it.

If all of this wasn't enough, Kathryn Bigelow and d.p. Barry Ackroyd do a phenomenal job visually. They have a great sense of spatial geography, and the action sequences are always easy to follow. In addition, the meticulous editing throughout serves to ratchet up the suspense. I don't care how much money was thrown at James Cameron's "game changer," I'll take the gritty realism his ex-wife has brought to bear with The Hurt Locker any day of the week.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Steve T Power » Thu Jan 14, 2010 11:10 pm

BenSaylor wrote:In terms of character study alone, The Hurt Locker is a singular work. Jeremy Renner's naturalistic lead performance, combined with Mark Boal's script, provides a very compelling portrait of an insatiable danger junkie. (not for nothing is the film's epigraph "War is a drug.") James is highly skilled at defusing bombs. He also really, really gets a thrill from it, a rush that civilian life can't provide him, which is what made the final shot of The Hurt Locker one of the more memorable closers in recent memory to me. Standing in contrast to James is Anthony Mackie's Sanborn (another terrific performance), who is, as Roger Ebert points out in his review, also a professional, but with an entirely different attitude than James. Without propagandizing, the film manages to make you consider the insanity of war, and the different ways in which those who must fight it choose to deal with it.

If all of this wasn't enough, Kathryn Bigelow and d.p. Barry Ackroyd do a phenomenal job visually. They have a great sense of spatial geography, and the action sequences are always easy to follow. In addition, the meticulous editing throughout serves to ratchet up the suspense. I don't care how much money was thrown at James Cameron's "game changer," I'll take the gritty realism his ex-wife has brought to bear with The Hurt Locker any day of the week.


Cameron apparently agrees with you. He's called "The Hurt Locker" the Platoon for the Iraq war era.
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Re: The Hurt Locker

Postby Bikerjames » Fri Mar 19, 2010 12:49 pm

This is one of the most overrated movies of all time. It's not a bad film, but it does not deserve all the acclaim. The scenes involving the Iraq people are ridiculous. People screaming at them with guns in their faces and they act so nonchalant. Walking around bomb areas where they know they could step on a bomb any second without a care. The scene where he busts into someone's house with a gun pulled and the reaction of the two people in the house were ludicrous - especially the woman. The scene where they are in their room drunk fighting each other was laughable. However, I will say the scenes where he was dismantling the bombs were great, as was the sniper scene in the desert. Overall good, not great.
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