The Hurt Locker

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Rule Britannia....
So, I finally saw this movie. Disappointed, but before you start criticizing me, let me just say it was a solid movie. I'm not person who's easily dragged into numerous discussions about huge movies,oscar winners etc..Because it's details I look the most.

What can I say, I simply expected more. Not talking about the ending or casting. Maybe it should have more dialogue.
On the other note, I just didn't get the behavior of the main character. I can understand it is what he does the best, but in my opinion it is totally opposite of the reality. In reality, he would have been talking some responsibility for his actions and reckless behavior, knowing he's putting himself and the others to a death threatening situation.

So, was it just some kind of encouragement for the young Americans to join the war of profit and filth? 3 buddies, drinking, hanging around etc while the innocents die every minute.

I just can't see how this movie got so many oscars? Personally I would give them for directing and editing. Others, really should have gone to someone else.

All in all, this movie wasn't bad, but it is HIGHLY overrated.
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Last year, previous to any major award shows, I found myself very excited to watch the much anticipated Hurt Locker. However, even halfway through viewing, I was already disappointed, mostly because the movies premise was much different than advertised.
It had not been demonstrated to the public as being a documentary or even a movie "based" off of a true story (which it wasn't either). I felt as though it tried to tie together the themes of a regular film and a documentary to portray even more dominant themes of patriotism present in today's society. However, that type of film is not what I hoped I'd signed up for. It tried so hard, that it didn't seem to accurately hit any of these themes.
The acting was done fairly well, however the unrealistic visions of war present weren't enough to make me believe what was going on. Unfortunately, I whole-heartedly believe the reason this controversial movie made the cut to win for Motion Picture was due to the fact that American's believe if they didn't like it, they weren't supporting our fellow army men and women. WHich, obviously, isn't the case at all. Strictly movie wise, I could have had more fun watching a documentary rather than this unrealistic and fairly poor done representation of the current war situation. Hence, my view is that it did not truly deserve not only its nomination, but ultimate win.
Any thoughts?
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So, you're saying that the voting members for the Oscars felt they had to let this picture win, because if they didn't, they would not be supporting the military?



How do you know these "visions of war," as you call them, were unrealistic? Have you been on a tour of duty in Iraq or Afghanistan? You don't believe that a bomb can be set off with a cell phone?

The writer of this, did "embed" himself with an EOD (Explosive Ordinance Disposal) team, and wrote a story about it, which was published in a Playboy magazine, and is what is the basis for this movie.

Still, these "unrealistic visions of war" are very real to a lot of men and women returning from tours of duty in that area. Just because it doesn't get reported on every major news network, doesn't it mean it didn't happen.

So, you were saying?
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Spudracer pretty much summed up my thoughts...
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Hurt Locker was a good movie. I wanted that or Precious to win Best Picture that year.
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I just didn't get the behavior of the main character. I can understand it is what he does the best, but in my opinion it is totally opposite of the reality. In reality, he would have been talking some responsibility for his actions and reckless behavior, knowing he's putting himself and the others to a death threatening situation.
This is more of what I was going for. No, I am not saying that no military technology exists that I am not aware of, or that it is impossible for it to be complex(such as a bomb being detonated from a cell phone), but I am saying that certain actions of the characters were unrealistic. True, they might had references from people with experience in the situation, but you must remember that all stories "based off of real life" must be somewhat exaggerated. That's what film does, unless it is coined a documentary. There needs to be some elements of a traditional action-adventure/war film that we are used to seeing, that or need to see to fully support it in order for the audience to keep passing on the movie by word-of-mouth.

The main character didn't seem to make decisions, except ones that put others into danger, and no, I cannot help but think that is a tad unrealistic. Especially when no serious repercussions were met after.

My point, overall, was that there is more politics involved in areas of entertainment than we realize, or choose to realize. Although many areas of this film portray the war in Iraq, and real-life struggles that must be overcome, I think many filmmakers know how to twist them in certain ways in order to make a film more enjoyable to the reader. When the guild sees films like this, and our country needs a sense of patriotism to tie us together (which, after all, is really all we have), wouldn't this film be seen as a great American documentary? Politics plays a role everywhere in our society, even in places we don't see it interfering. Movies, songs, etc. are often chosen to represent what the government and leading organizations want their citizens up uphold. Who could disagree that things "America" should like are the ones highly advertised to the general public??

As far as meeting the requirements for a FILM, this definitely fails. There is no character development (which, normally should occur over the course of a long period of time), and the characters don't seem to make decisions that would really occur in these situations (with few exceptions). The only things it follows would be the explosions that people miraculously live through, and the limited sense of danger they all seem to be placed in in public. Overall, there was some added drama to make it faintly more interesting. There was no climax to the story, and the ending did not satisfy any major dilemma or leave the watcher with a sense of closure to the characters or their story. I understand that this is maybe where one would leave off hearing about a war group in real life, but then this movie should follow more of the writing characteristics of a documentary.

Just because someone "embedded" themselves in this story, and claims these things to be real, doesn't necessarily mean they are. Like I said above, I'm sure some are, but the others are exaggerated or changed. After all, the writers, directors, and producers have the final say on what to emit to audiences don't they? We have no idea about many true accounts until we hear them from numerous amounts of sources.I fully support the troops, and many things about the struggles here may be experienced by them, which I do not deny, or wish to put down. However, this film was not exceptional in any way, other than it made us believe that we know exactly what life would be like in war, which we cannot by a film with added moments of uncertainty.



The main character didn't seem to make decisions, except ones that put others into danger, and no, I cannot help but think that is a tad unrealistic. Especially when no serious repercussions were met after.
That was the entire point of the movie: he's an adrenaline junkie. He makes terrible decisions, and he gets out of them because he's extremely good at what he does. But he's a loose cannon and takes chances, etc. Just because he's the primary character it doesn't mean you're supposed to love everything he does.

My point, overall, was that there is more politics involved in areas of entertainment than we realize, or choose to realize. Although many areas of this film portray the war in Iraq, and real-life struggles that must be overcome, I think many filmmakers know how to twist them in certain ways in order to make a film more enjoyable to the reader. When the guild sees films like this, and our country needs a sense of patriotism to tie us together (which, after all, is really all we have), wouldn't this film be seen as a great American documentary? Politics plays a role everywhere in our society, even in places we don't see it interfering. Movies, songs, etc. are often chosen to represent what the government and leading organizations want their citizens up uphold. Who could disagree that things "America" should like are the ones highly advertised to the general public??
The film makes war look terrifying and brutal. This is not a rah-rah-rah military flick by any stretch of the imagination. You could make a better case that it's an anti-war film, for crying out loud, but in reality it's neither.

All this stuff about politics is well and good, but I think people reading politics into places it isn't happens far more often than directors smuggling in political undertones that we're not aware of. If you want to make the case that this is an overtly political film, let's get into some specifics, eh?
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As far as the main character goes, I am aware that we are not supposed to always like them. But, if this film is supposed to show the realities of war, shouldn't be be a soldier that doesn't represent all of those qualities? After all, how many do, and get away with it? Certainly not those specifically trained for such important jobs. This was simply to make the movie, a movie.

It does indeed make war look brutal, which I cannot say that it is from experience, yet still know that it is. However, if they wanted to make a movie that would accurately portray events, jobs, or actual stories, they should have made a documentary. This film, in my opinion, was partly made to be controversial. In this way, it is still talked about today, unlike other war films made recently. We could argue all day about politics, but no matter what your opinion might be, politics runs the world, and majority of the influential media. Sorry, but that's reality.



Well, how do we know that's unrealistic? I've never defused bombs for the military. I'm guessing you haven't. I'm also guessing such people are really, really hard to find and recruit, so I'd guess it takes a lot to get rid of one when a) they're really great at what they do and b) we're fighting two wars involving insurgencies. I won't pretend to know either way, but it didn't strike me as terribly contrived. And even if it did, it's a movie! You keep pointing out that it's not a documentary, but doesn't that mean it gets granted a reasonable amount of dramatic license? So long as it's not slandering people or misrepresenting crucial facts, of course.

Re: "politics runs the world." Nobody's disputing that, but that doesn't mean every film is overtly political (we can see that many are not), and it certainly isn't a defense of a specific political interpretation.



Yes, it should receive a certain amount of dramatic license for being a movie. Therefore, it is fine as is. However, it did claim to be an accurate portrayal when first advertised, and this is what many film critics review it as. Therefore, I see it being a tad bit of a stretch. "It's just a movie..." is a good comment. It is. Therefore, it should be evaluated as a movie/film, which by normal, recognized film-making conventions, is not properly executed. Like I said before, there is no climax, severe character development, or clear resolution that make this film worth watching. It is like watching a few days out of someone's life... which does not make for a film, but instead an excerpt or sorry, documentary. It does succeed in breaking such normal conventions and giving us something we are not used to, but unfortunately doesn't make sense as a progression of characters or plot that make a story worth getting lost into.



Yes, it should receive a certain amount of dramatic license for being a movie. Therefore, it is fine as is. However, it did claim to be an accurate portrayal when first advertised, and this is what many film critics review it as. Therefore, I see it being a tad bit of a stretch.
Who claimed it was accurate or very realistic? All these claims are so vague. And, again, how do we know it isn't accurate? This is all just guesswork, right?

"It's just a movie..." is a good comment. It is. Therefore, it should be evaluated as a movie/film, which by normal, recognized film-making conventions, is not properly executed. Like I said before, there is no climax, severe character development, or clear resolution that make this film worth watching. It is like watching a few days out of someone's life... which does not make for a film, but instead an excerpt or sorry, documentary. It does succeed in breaking such normal conventions and giving us something we are not used to, but unfortunately doesn't make sense as a progression of characters or plot that make a story worth getting lost into.
Wow, we'll have to totally disagree about this. There is nothing inherently wrong with a film that simply tries to show you a "few days out of someone's life." Many films fit that definition. Most stories are told in a certain way, sure, but there's nothing inherently wrong with a fictional film telling its story in a different way. Films, thank goodness, are not restricted to either some predictable formula, or else turning themselves into documentaries. There are no "rules" about this, and I found The Hurt Locker quite compelling with any of the staples of "recognized film-making conventions." Though I suspect we'd disagree about what those are, anyway.

All that said, whether or not it's "something we are not used to" depends on what each of us watches, yeah?



Why is it that when a film doesn't follow the predictable structure of protagonist/antagonist, protagonist develops (because that's realistic 100% time, but not really), audience likes protagonist, blah blah. Movies don't need to follow these stereotypes of what a movie is supposed to entail.



Movies don't NEED to do any of these things.... but in an analytical course that I just finished, we analyzed films like this, and how they differ from the norm of conventional film making. And it did indeed differ from how it was originally portrayed to follow. I just didn't see it as a film I was expecting based off of this. Therefore, I was disappointed.
There's obviously nothing wrong with a film that does this, I was simply saying I didn't enjoy it. You did. Congrats.



Why hold expectations for anything? Also, whatever you learn from a course shouldn't be the only foundation you go by when it comes to applying knowledge. Just because a film course says this doesn't mean it's 1. correct, or 2. objective or even realistically applicable. The idea of a course, in any topic, is to provide background for your jumping-off point where you make up your own mind about those concepts you learned about rather than following them blindly. Roger Ebert isn't always right, neither am I, but that's the idea isn't it? To dissect the tools of examination finds one better equipped and more aware that things like expectations hold little relevance to the actuality of something.



I think the point of all this is that, when someone is "surprised" by an unusual film (though, really, The Hurt Locker isn't all that unusual), it's more a statement about them and what they watch than a statement about the film. And that's not necessarily a slight, just an observation.

Anyway, the "you liked it, I didn't" response is all well and good, but it's a slight change from earlier, where you were suggesting that any film that's going to have a structure like this should be a documentary. Can't agree with that at all, but hey, to each their own.



Simply meant that analytically, a film with these conventions and they way in which they follow people would have worked better for a well-done documentary. Again, that is simply my opinion. But, some critics seem to agree...



But they weren't making a documentary, so what you're saying is merely that you think it's shot and laid out kind of like a documentary, yes? You used the word "conventions," which in another thread you seem to be defining as shooting style, in which case I would point out that feeling like a documentary is the point of the film. When a film deals with realistic subject matter, or is loosely based on actual accounts, it's reasonable to shoot that film in a way that reminds us of actual footage, to emphasize this point. I don't see a problem with this.

Re: critics. Which ones are you referring to? Because it got 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. It's critically adored.

EDIT: sorry, it's 97%. Yowza.



No wonder you didn't like it. You spent the entire time analyzing the movie instead of just watching it. School ruins film, I says.
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No wonder you didn't like it. You spent the entire time analyzing the movie instead of just watching it. School ruins film, I says.
It gives you the tools to choose to ruin or increase appreciation for, up to the person.