Friday, January 22, 2010

The Hurt Locker


Kathryn Bigelow has given me two of my all time favourite films with Near Dark and Point Break, and I will watch anything she directs. When I heard about this film, it seemed like something rather different from her and I wasn't sure if it was really going to be my cup of tea. But damn was I ever wrong, what she has crafted here is probably one of the most intense and suspensful films I have ever seen. This is a film set in Iraq, with a group that makes up the bomb squad unit. They get sent in to dismantle and disarm bombs in the most dangerous of situations.

Now I have no idea how acurate the portrayal of this actually is, I am not going to pretend to know what it is like being smack bang in the middle of a war and what it is like being there. I can only look at this as a film, and what I got from it. You are basically put into a dangerous situation from the start of this film, you see the people involved and what they have to deal with. They are dealing with a bomb that could go off at any second, potention enemy could be anywhere waiting to detonate. The intensity of it all really got to me, and I was glued to the screen, and actually fearing what may happen. We get to know our characters and their situations and how doing this particular job has affected them. They try and deal with their every day lives out there, trying to keep themselves sane while the place around them crumbs (so to speak). They do not want to be there, but they get that call that there is a bomb and they have to go out there.

You get a really strong feel for everything going on, Kathryn's direction here is nothing short of fantastic and I don't think I saw a film in 2009 with better direction. It brings you right in, and it does not let up until the final frame. The look of the film is fantastic, you feel like you are right there with them. The washed out look, the cinematography, it just all feels very authentic. Acting wise, our three main characters are all just fantastic and they all excelled in their roles. Brian Geraghty as Owen did such a great job as the young and disturbed one. Anthony Mackie as JT was just so damn good in his role, he wants to take charge of the situation he knows how dangerous things are. Then we have for me the stand out with Jeremy Renner as William, the new guy to the team who seems rather wreckless and of course has his issues with JT. Renner certainly gave one of my favourite performances from 2009, he played all the right notes and just seemed to fit this character perfectly.

I can certainly understand all the praise for this film, it really does deserve it. It is a slow burn film, which worked really well for it. It certainly wouldn't have been as intense if it was done differently. It has some nice cameos from a lot of familar faces and they all do pretty well. Some interesting sub plots, one which kind of left me a bit confused but after thinking about it, I understood what was going on and it made perfect sense. I really want to watch this again, because I am sure I will get even more out of it a second time.


monty said...

I've been wanting to see this film too. And I love Kathryn Bigelow. Point Break is one of my favorite films. Near Dark was pretty good too. And Jeremy Renner is fast becoming a new favorite of mine. Loved him in 28 weeks later.

Marceyness said...

See it ASAP great film. I'm actually watching Renner now in Dahmer