Escape to the Movies: American Sniper - An Empty War Film

3asytarg3t

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Jun 8, 2010
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Here Bob, let me help you sort out some of what this movie is about since its so clearly lost on you:

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/richard-brody/american-sniper-takes-apart-myth-american-warrior
 

KissingSunlight

Molotov Cocktails, Anyone?
Jul 3, 2013
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I'm going to ask the same question that I asked after reading a column critical of Sports Illustrated's choice for Sports Person of the Year. The columnist was critical of the choice not because the person was undeserving or disreputable. It's just that he didn't represent any of the social issues that arose in 2014. The question I asked aloud was: "Does EVERYTHING have to be about social justice?"

American Sniper is a biopic of a decorated soldier. If he had a stand on the politics of the war, and the movie didn't addressed it. Bob would have a legitimate complaint. However, this guy was great at his job and decided to help others after the war. Why should anybody try to shoehorn any political agenda into the movie?

I noticed a lot of people are comparing it to Zero Dark Thirty. My take from the trailer that it might be closer to The Hurt Locker. More about a guy who obsessively go back into combat. I am interested in seeing it when it's released nationwide. Which brings me to my last complaint. Why didn't Bob review a movie that was released nationwide on Christmas?
 

jackpipsam

SEGA fanboy
Jun 2, 2009
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Maybe it's because I am Australian, so 9/11 to me is more about how my country to suckered into the war alongside the USA when we really had no reason to be there.

But I do think it's been easily long enough to talk about films, tv, books, games or what have you about 9/11 and be critical about it.
I mean there's MUCH to be critical about the politics surrounding the event (but then, that's my bias).

If the film sucks, the film sucks. It shouldn't need to be more complicated than that, but hey I guess that's the world we live in.
 

DerangedHobo

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Jan 11, 2012
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Uriel_Hayabusa said:
Oh, and I hope Bob feels at least a little bit silly to refer to a negative depiction of a Taliban-terrorist as a ''super-villain'' considering all the horrible things the Taliban do and have done. The 2014 Peshawar school massacre is a chilling reminder of that.
By that logic, just be being in a western society (especially America) makes you responsible for the PTSD of veterans, the killing of innocent civillians either accidentally or intentionally and the abhorrent breaches of human rights and the rights detailed in the Constitution just by paying your taxes. Not to mention supporting an economic structure which has 10 year old African children digging in a ditch and other poor workers being exploited to make your cheap clothes.

You see what I'm getting at? Your logic implies that being part of a system or organisation actively makes you responsible for the abohrrent acts of said organisation. The funny thing is that I completely agree with this logic, the thing I disagree with is you claiming that one side is a villain (due to a recent event specifically) and the past actions of their organisation. Humans are selfish creatures and everyone has blood on their hands, directly or indirectly.

To assume that the world works in such black and white is, quite frankly, a fallacy. Everything is a grey area and when it comes to individuals, very few people think of themselves as 'evil'. Reasoning (rational or not) for actions as well as pressures by an authorotative figure can make anyone do very bad things. Just something to keep in mind.
 

samus17

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Jun 5, 2010
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Classic case of reviewing "what I wanted to be in the movie" vs reviewing what the movie actually is
 

deathbydeath

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Jun 28, 2010
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I legit laughed at my screen when Bob brought up Winter Soldier. It's been over half a year since the movie came out guys; we can stop pretending it was relevant now.
 

anonymity88

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Sep 20, 2010
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deathbydeath said:
I legit laughed at my screen when Bob brought up Winter Soldier. It's been over half a year since the movie came out guys; we can stop pretending it was relevant now.
You've come to the wrong movie reviewer if you expect that!

[Although for the record, I agree with you]
 

Ihateregistering1

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Mar 30, 2011
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This might be the strangest review I've ever seen.

So Bob is upset because a movie that is based off an autobiography, and as far as I know follows the autobiography very closely (I'll admit I haven't read the book) doesn't deviate from the source material in order to give it some sort of "point"?

"Is it pro-war? Anti-war? Ambiguous? It doesn't really seem to know or care."
Why does this even matter? This is the story told through the eyes of one individual, who probably chose not to voice his personal opinion about the conflict, maybe because Soldiers are technically supposed to remain politically neutral. Why should the director arbitrarily lean one way or the other when it's not even in the source material?

And sorry, but I don't believe him for a second that he simply wants it to pick a side. Does anyone here seriously think that if Eastwood had transformed it into an pro-war movie in order to "make a point", that Bob wouldn't be trashing it as jingoistic propaganda?
 

Verlander

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Apr 22, 2010
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What Bob forgot is that if you don't immediately drop to your knees and start sucking off old white congressmen whenever you're presented with a film that has the word America in it, or an American flag in the front image, you're actually just corrupted by personal politics and incapable of giving an objective review on something. And if you point out that those who worship crap just because it panders to the propaganda drunk average-man, well that makes you a commie.

In other news, the following picture just won an award for aesthetics:

 

Ihateregistering1

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Mar 30, 2011
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Verlander said:
What Bob forgot is that if you don't immediately drop to your knees and start sucking off old white congressmen whenever you're presented with a film that has the word America in it, or an American flag in the front image, you're actually just corrupted by personal politics and incapable of giving an objective review on something. And if you point out that those who worship crap just because it panders to the propaganda drunk average-man, well that makes you a commie.

In other news, the following picture just won an award for aesthetics:

Ouch!!!

Sorry, I just cut myself on your edginess.
 

Verlander

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Apr 22, 2010
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Ihateregistering1 said:
Verlander said:
What Bob forgot is that if you don't immediately drop to your knees and start sucking off old white congressmen whenever you're presented with a film that has the word America in it, or an American flag in the front image, you're actually just corrupted by personal politics and incapable of giving an objective review on something. And if you point out that those who worship crap just because it panders to the propaganda drunk average-man, well that makes you a commie.

In other news, the following picture just won an award for aesthetics:

Ouch!!!

Sorry, I just cut myself on your edginess.
I'm sorry to hear that. Here, have a bandage.
 

Gronk

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Jun 24, 2013
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Movie about guy having problems coping with civilian life, bragging about killing/murdering some 160 people, and who finally gets what he's been dishing out? Sounds like fun, but I still think I'll pass.

Oh, and who seriously thought it was a good idea to treat ptsd on a firing range?
 

TheAlien

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Apr 18, 2014
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Wow, Moviebob not liking a movie about a true American Hero and the struggles he endured. Imagine that. Apparently, he has never been in the Armed Services, known anyone who has been in the Armed Services who has been in combat, or even friggin read about anybody who has been in the Armed Services. The lame excuse of "he did say it would been a good documentary" is just that...lame. This was an awesome movie that took the time to explain PTSD and the reasons for it. Anyone with half a brain could figure that out. If you didn't get the center of this movie, you couldn't have possibly watched it. Either that, or you're just so anti-military, no good military hero movie would ever be good in your opinion. I call shenanigans on this review.
 

Kuredan

Hingle McCringleberry
Dec 4, 2012
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I guess this film just resonated with me more than its detractors. I'm perfectly fine with a no thrills, realistic representation of Kyle's life; I saw something in it I recognized and I realized that most people wouldn't. I get that people want to find a bigger meaning, that they want the movie to take a stance to support their views. Those people generally do that from the comfort of a home far away from the front lines, entirely disconnected from the lives of people who deploy. For those of us who have served, we wanted a little less out of life. We'd take a hot shower, somewhere it isn't 120 f***ing degrees in the shade. A package of Skittles. Anything to cut through the boredom of being on watch for twelve hours. The promise of coming home. I think the movie did a good job at showing the little things that make up a soldier' (seamen, airmen, marines)s life. You ever heard an air raid siren in your neighborhood? Ever had to find hard cover in less than 30 seconds? You ever lost somebody you see every day in a matter of seconds? Most people haven't and wouldn't understand that life. I thought the movie did a good job of showing an unknowing (and apparently uncaring) public a glimpse of what life is like. War, as experienced by soldiers is apolitical. It's a job. You do it well and you get to come home maybe. The people back home that sent you there, the people back home who don't want you there, they fight (or more accurately shout) to find meaning and morality in a war they are not experiencing. The whole old men send young men to die thing. I think certain people just don't "get" a war movie, wouldn't recognize the genuine article from Hollywood schmaltz. Eastwood's film gave me flashbacks. I didn't necessarily enjoy it, but like I said earlier it resonated with me. In my opinion, it's the genuine article.
 

Odin311

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Mar 11, 2010
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Kuredan said:
I guess this film just resonated with me more than its detractors. I'm perfectly fine with a no thrills, realistic representation of Kyle's life; I saw something in it I recognized and I realized that most people wouldn't. I get that people want to find a bigger meaning, that they want the movie to take a stance to support their views. Those people generally do that from the comfort of a home far away from the front lines, entirely disconnected from the lives of people who deploy. For those of us who have served, we wanted a little less out of life. We'd take a hot shower, somewhere it isn't 120 f***ing degrees in the shade. A package of Skittles. Anything to cut through the boredom of being on watch for twelve hours. The promise of coming home. I think the movie did a good job at showing the little things that make up a soldier' (seamen, airmen, marines)s life. You ever heard an air raid siren in your neighborhood? Ever had to find hard cover in less than 30 seconds? You ever lost somebody you see every day in a matter of seconds? Most people haven't and wouldn't understand that life. I thought the movie did a good job of showing an unknowing (and apparently uncaring) public a glimpse of what life is like. War, as experienced by soldiers is apolitical. It's a job. You do it well and you get to come home maybe. The people back home that sent you there, the people back home who don't want you there, they fight (or more accurately shout) to find meaning and morality in a war they are not experiencing. The whole old men send young men to die thing. I think certain people just don't "get" a war movie, wouldn't recognize the genuine article from Hollywood schmaltz. Eastwood's film gave me flashbacks. I didn't necessarily enjoy it, but like I said earlier it resonated with me. In my opinion, it's the genuine article.
I would like to thank you for your well worded and thought out post!

It has been apparent to me for a long time that Bob is extremely anti-war. As someone who has served in the Marines, and lost friends in Iraq, I am proud to say that I am also anti-war. The difference is that not only did I do my job, I seem to know when to look past what my views are, and see things from other peoples perspectives.

To me American Sniper showcased an individual who did an incredibly difficult job, and had to find a way to cope with what he had done. While one may not like what Chris Kyle did, or how he dealt with it, I feel that one should respect what he did. His actions saved Marines, Soldiers and Sailors. These were Americans that were just doing what they were instructed to do by their government. These are people that would have died if he did not pull the trigger. These are Sons, Brothers, Husbands, and Fathers that wouldn't have come home if he didn't pull the trigger.

That is what I got out of the book and the movie. Chris Kyle may have been a lot of things that people don't like. But that doesn't takeaway form what he actually did.
 

Odoylerules360

We're all just folk now...
Aug 29, 2008
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Chew on a hairy one, Bob, stories don't need to have a point, the only thing they really need to do in order to matter is to make people care about them. If they do that, the audience will supply the point. Or I suppose Das Boot was just a bunch of stuff happening on a submarine?
 

Reason_To_Smile

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Sep 14, 2015
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Didn't really stay interested, it dragged on imo. Not what I was expecting, I thought it would be more of a thriller. Glad I didn't waste the money going to see it opening day like I had planned.