American Sniper (2014) quick review

Discussion in 'Reader Reviews' started by thing, Jan 10, 2015.

  1. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2004
    Messages:
    1,650
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    New Zealand
    [​IMG]
    American Sniper (2014, Clint Eastwood)
    4/10
    This is the somewhat true story of the deadliest sniper (Bradley Cooper) in the United States military history. It is hard to sympathize with the lead role (the sniper) as he is a blind patriot redneck but the funny this is that from all accounts in real life he was even more of an insufferable asshole so they obviously tried to inject some kind of likability into his character. The film however is well made, well acted and has a lot of tense moments but is very gung-ho, right wing and leaves a bad taste in your mouth and whilst you expect it to pull back and make a more reasoned comment on war but it never does.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2015
  2. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2004
    Messages:
    1,650
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Anyone gonna get some chewing tobacco and go see this?
     
  3. Hatchetwarrior

    Hatchetwarrior Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2007
    Messages:
    1,791
    Likes Received:
    352
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Farmingdale, New York
    I'm on vacation this week so I plan on checking it out. I just saw BIRDMAN the other day (which has jumped to the top of my favorite films list for 2014), and that was pretty danm amazing. Eastwood has kind of fallen off in recent memory, but I'm looking forward to this one despite the controversy surrounding it.
     
  4. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2004
    Messages:
    1,650
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Birdman finally opens here on thursday, look forward to it
     
  5. Hatchetwarrior

    Hatchetwarrior Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2007
    Messages:
    1,791
    Likes Received:
    352
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Farmingdale, New York
    Although I liked this one more, storyline wise, than some of Eastwood’s more recent directorial efforts, it completely blows my mind this film got 6 nominations at the Oscars. In all honesty I think it is pretty fucking ridiculous that this received a best picture nom when you stack it up against some of the more complex, rich, character driven films in the best picture category. Hell, I really thought Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken was more of a shoe in for best picture since it’s received a bit more positive reception.

    I’ll go on a tangent about that later but I want to talk about the film a little bit first. The performances and direction are solid and the violence is often brutal and a bit disturbing
    two young children are murdered in pretty graphic fashion
    , but outside of that everything else about this film is just ok. The cinematography is very flat compared to a lot of other Eastwood movies and the storyline gets very repetitive towards the end.
    The one major difference of opinion I have about this film with you Thing is its political agenda. Honestly, I don’t feel it is right leaning at all. The one thing I’ve always liked about Eastwood’s war movies is that they don’t pander to a particular political position, they mostly focus on the reality of war and how it effects the individual (Flags of Our Fathers being the best example of that). But I do agree this film is very disingenuous. In this dudes own memoir he brags about killing over 300 people in combat and even says he killed people in New Orleans after the Katrina disaster (this has not been confirmed, but I think it is nothing more than macho bullshit swaggering). For the most part I think Eastwood left things ambiguous. Sure, there are moments when
    Cooper’s character has attacks of conscious. Like we he sees the kid picking up the bazooka and quietly begs him not to use it
    . From what I’ve read about how the memoir compares to the book, it seems that Eastwood and company took a lot of artistic license, which is disingenuous, in my opinion, when you are making a bio-drama. What really bugs me is how safe they chose to play it through out the entirety of the film. They dance around the fact that Chris Kyle was a complete sociopath who had little remorse for the things he did and dangle too much hope around his possible improving metal state right before his death.

    Side note: Bradley Cooper does give a very respectable performance here, but it pisses me off to no end that he gets a best actor nomination in this over Gyllenhaal in Nightcrawler. As far as I am concerned Cooper could not lace up Gyllenhaal’s shoes on the set of Nightcrawler, that is how far apart on the spectrum these performances are.
     
  6. shithead

    shithead Death By Ejaculation

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2005
    Messages:
    2,903
    Likes Received:
    171
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Florida
    Why should he feel remorse? The people (if you can even call them that) he killed were total pieces of shit that would behead you and your family without blinking a fucking eye. He did the world a favor as far as i'm concerned. Too bad he couldn't kill more.

    All in all I thought it was a solid war movie and Cooper definitely deserved the Oscar nom. Easily his best acting to date and was just as good (if not better) than Gyllenhaal. But did the movie deserve to be in Best Picture over Nightcrawler? Hell no.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2015
  7. Angelman

    Angelman OCD Blu Ray Collector

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2004
    Messages:
    3,585
    Likes Received:
    1,118
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Personal politics aside, it's hard to watch someone do something like that, even justifiable actions, and not want to know that doing that thing bothers them. As an audience member (and for story's sake) you want to know they are as upset as you, that there is some grief, some humanity in all of the tough choices, otherwise you are telling the audience that this person feels nothing.

    It's a tough line to walk story/character/direction-wise.
     
  8. CPT HOOK

    CPT HOOK Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    Messages:
    5,906
    Likes Received:
    728
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    US
    That's weird. Birdman has been long gone from theaters here (although I'm sure it will be back in theaters in the wake of its Best Picture nomination).

    On the other hand, American Sniper just opened today.
     
  9. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2004
    Messages:
    1,650
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    New Zealand
    I live in NZ, we get some films before you and some after.
     
  10. soxfan666

    soxfan666 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2004
    Messages:
    1,122
    Likes Received:
    52
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    SW Florida
    Saw this last night and thought it was very good. It is geared towards Americans and as such may not resonate as well with folks from other countries. I did not find any political leanings in the narrative. It could be possible to take the attitudes of Chris Kyle that way, but it is a small portrait of his character and not a film message. The screening was sold out and I figure most weekend showings here in the states to be the same.

    It is often said that Chris Kyle was a prick and it is not shown in the film. I am not sure how he was while living, but I would imagine that many SEALS would be seen this way. I cannot imagine the mind set of specialized soldiers, but I am thankful they exist and view the Chris Kyle as a hero.
     
  11. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2004
    Messages:
    1,650
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Americans are so weird
     
  12. Shannafey

    Shannafey Don't Monkey With Me!

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2001
    Messages:
    6,941
    Likes Received:
    33
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    South Florida, But Far from the Hell that is Miami
    Thank you! Couldn't agree more!
     
  13. Hatchetwarrior

    Hatchetwarrior Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2007
    Messages:
    1,791
    Likes Received:
    352
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Farmingdale, New York
  14. thrashard76

    thrashard76 Thrash or be Thrashed

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2012
    Messages:
    13,646
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Virginia, USA
    That's fantastic! I'll pass seeing it in the theaters but I'll definitely pick up the blu-ray when it streets.
     
  15. Franco

    Franco Weekender

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,456
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Peru
    Same here, except I live in Peru.

    Gonna see American Sniper this week.
     
  16. bigdaddyhorse

    bigdaddyhorse Detroit Hi-on

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    12,508
    Likes Received:
    56
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Under a rock
    I haven't seen either of these flicks yet, but did see Bill O'Reilly crying about how Sniper got snubbed at the Oscars last night? I tried to make sense of it, but there is no sense to be had. How the fuck is 6 noms snubbed, cuz Clint didn't get best director? Must be the chair taking revenge!:lol::lol::lol::lol:

    I hadn't heard about this guy for a while. Wasn't he a guest judge/trainer on an episode or 2 of Top Shot? Oh, Stars Earn Stripes was teh show. He didn't come off as dick there, but everyone can come off anyway depending. Had not heard he got killed till this weekend thou. R.I.P., dick or not.

    Michael Moore.... Just shut the fuck up please! While I enjoy your movies and agree on many things with you, calling snipers who take 4 tours coward while you sit your fat hypocritical ass at home makes me want to kick you square and shoot you! There's a time and place for everything, and you're no better than those Woodsbourgh assholes in this regard!
     
  17. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    8,881
    Likes Received:
    722
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I've seen Chris Kylie interviewed many times and heard him on the radio too. Never did I get the sense that he was bragging at all. People asked him the questions and he answered them honestly.
     
  18. crikan

    crikan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2008
    Messages:
    2,026
    Likes Received:
    105
    Trophy Points:
    63
    The last thing I would want is for a hero like Chris Kyle to ever feel "upset" for the things he did while protecting us from evil. I would wish him and all of our service members to have a restful nights sleep filled with no guilt for all of their days. If you think of Kyle as a killer you are looking at it wrong. He was a protector. He protected his comrades from evil doers that meant them harm. And he protected us from scum that would gleefully behead us for the lives we live. Be happy that people like Chris Kyle exist because they are the ones that allow us the freedoms we enjoy. I certainly don't have the courage or mental makeup to do it.
     
  19. Mok

    Mok Family is Forever

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2003
    Messages:
    5,011
    Likes Received:
    225
    Trophy Points:
    63
    He's talking about in Battlefield. Fucking cowards! Nothing is worse than being a sliver away from taking an objective on Paracel Storm and getting your shit ruined from another island by some fucking douche bag sniper. :fire: :fire: :fire:

    On the subject of the film itself, I do want to see it but more so because it's Clint Eastwood's stuff. This Chris Kyle guy is the guy who decided, for no apparent reason, to claim he punched out Jesse Ventura which was no only untrue, but alienated Jesse from his Navy Seal comrades. Further more when Jesse took him to court over it, the guy died in a freak accident and Jesse's pursuit to exonerate himself backfired because the jury decided to award him a lopping sum of money and dickheads like Anderson Cooper took to twitter to chastise him over it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wS94kfNwye4

    Clint Eastwood's next movie should be a documentary about Jesse Ventura becoming the greatest president in U.S. history.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2015
  20. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Messages:
    8,881
    Likes Received:
    722
    Trophy Points:
    113
    First of all how do you know it's untrue. Why because Jesse said so? It's one guys word against another. I would go with Kyle. There was ZERO bragging about the incident. In fact he considered it kinda embarrassing because he hit an older man.

    Kyle never mentioned Jesse in the book. Just the incident. He's only mention Jesse in interviews as the guy he was talking about in the book. And the interview which Kyle revealed that it was Jesse wasn't even brought up by him in the first place. A caller, put him on the spot and said is this true that you punched out Jesse? Kyle responded to the guys question & then told the story.

    Plus treason? That's garbage. What Jesse said to Kyle is not defined as treason. Besides he's been saying stuff about the US government for years. One of the main reasons why he moved to Mexico. Jesse is a blowhard. He's an arrogant bully that got knocked out and is embarrassed that everyone knows it. Watch that clip , he's more concerned to boast on how big he was around that time & how there was no scratch on him. Jesse is all over the place, he can't decide if wants to clear that he didn't say what he said or he wants to clear that he wasn't knocked out. There is zero reason why Kyle would make up a story about Jesse. What did he have to gain? It makes zero sense. And if he hit another guy, why hasn't that guy come forward? Out of all the people in the world to say who you hit, why Jesse? Again it makes zero sense.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2015

Share This Page