The Big Picture: American Sniper Sucks (And It's Okay To Admit That)

Haerthan

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inu-kun said:
Haerthan said:
Dude Saddam was an angel compared to what the ISIS is right now. Also I would leave him in power cause he was a counter-balance to Iran. A majority of Iraqis want him back cause guess what: there was order, there was an economy, there was food. Funny how that works. Was he bad? Yea. But there will always be someone worse.
The same way Stalin is an angel compared to hitler?

You know who likes getting rid of Saddam? the Kurds, for example. But if the majority enjoys the tyranny why should anyone stop them?
Sure for the Kurds Saddam was a tyrant. But guess what: ISIS is worse than Saddam for both the Kurds, the Shiites and the Sunnis. ISIS is actively engaged in a war with the Kurds of Iraq and Syria. And if they get the power in Iraq they will do worse than the Halabja chemical attack, just ask the Yazidis and Christians there. So yea Saddam was a tyrant, not doubt about it, a bad person through and through. But at least Iraq didn't have to deal with the shit under his regime that they deal with nowadays.

Stalin was worse than Hitler. Everybody with a knowledge of Eastern European history knows that. Saddam is nowhere near Stalin, so please stop bringing that analogy in the conversation because it doesn't work. A thief, a murderer, a genocidal maniac, manipulator and Christ knows what else.

Also funny how nobody asks the people of what they want, no matter where they are from. Nobody asked the Iraqis what they wanted when the US rolled into their country.
 

McElroy

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Storm Dragon said:
McElroy said:
Storm Dragon said:
I'd much rather see a movie about the deadliest sniper in all history: Simo Hayha. He was a Finnish farmer who enlisted during the Winter War and made at least 505 confirmed sniper kills over less than 100 days, all using an old bolt-action hunting rifle without a scope. The Soviet Union nicknamed him "The White Death" and launched entire missions just to kill this one man, up to and including artillery bombardments of areas where they thought he might be. Eventually, a Soviet sniper shot him in the lower jaw and took off half of his face. Simo responded by giving the Soviet sniper a first-hand demonstration of proper headshot technique. He then managed to return to base before succumbing to unconsciousness. Simo recovered and woke up a few days later, and the Soviets surrendered on that same day.

Seriously, this already sounds more like an action movie than real life.
While I agree with you and would like to see a movie about Häyhä (whether or not his kill count has been padded a bit), I must correct you on one thing: nobody surrendered at the end of Winter War. Häyhä woke up on the day the truce was declared.
Oops, fixed the ending bit. As for his kill count, 505 was actually the lowest estimate I found. Other sources credit him with as many as 542 sniper kills; and that's still not counting his approximately 150-200 kills with a submachine gun. Simo Häyhä wasn't just the deadliest sniper ever, he was the deadliest single human being in recorded history.
Well, people who actually dug into the original sources (or at least the closest alternatives they could find) have calculated his sniper kills to about 250-300. As seen here (prepare to be able to read Finnish): http://agricola.utu.fi/keskustelu/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=4868 One of the main figures used is 219 + about the same with an smg, that got mentioned in an award ceremony for Häyhä's accomplishments some four weeks before he got shot. The figure got bloated with the legend as well as the Soviets' tactics being rushing with the numbers advantage, and during such rushes Häyhä's war buddies "confirmed" loads of kills which all fell behind the enemy line where they couldn't actually be counted.
 

Shamanic Rhythm

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JarinArenos said:
Why do people insist on feeding obvious sockpuppets? I've never understood that.

Clint Eastwood hasn't put out a good movie in 20 years, whether directing or acting. I didn't expect this to change anything. It's about as rambling as his empty chair speech was.
The Bridges of Madison County, Million Dollar Baby, Gran Torino, Mystic River, Invictus and Letters From Iwo Jima/Flags of Our Fathers would like a word with you.

As for American Sniper, it seems that almost everyone who reviews it is projecting their political views onto it, whether they're left or right wing. I'm going to wait until it comes out on DVD and make up my own mind.
 

The Choke

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I like how people keep trying to say this movie is such an accurate representation of a soldier's life when it's not even an accurate representation of Kyle's life. Others have brought up the "don't speak ill of the dead" reasoning behind leaving out some of the more controversial aspects of the man's life, but if Eastwood wanted to make a movie fully recounting a sniper's career without worrying about insulting his family, he could have gone for the less-polarizing figure of Nicholas Irving, still alive and able to respond to his own critics, and holder of the undeniably-awesome nickname "The Reaper" (also the title of his autobiography). I was disappointed to not hear more from him during his guest spot on The Nightly Show that discussed the movie.

Basically, given Kyle's career-kill-record and then sudden death, I can understand why Eastwood was enamored with telling his story, but I feel like in tip-toeing around the family's feelings, he may have done the story a disservice. It feels like it wants to say more but doesn't want to offend anyone, liberal or conservative, and so carefully avoids the main thrust of it's own argument- making its argument impossible to guess. Why is this movie, basically?

As someone who has never been to war, I went to see the movie with the hope that it would give me some insight into a man who did serve. However, Eastwood's hesitation made me feel like I was only getting half the story. I know some people say that I would hope the other half of the story would be something that spoke to my liberalism, but honestly I'd just like to see the other half of the story, period. Not "the other side" but just the parts that Eastwood felt would be too complicated to deal with while also being respectful of the recently dead. When I think about those things, it's impossible for the movie to not feel incomplete to me.
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

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Shamanic Rhythm said:
JarinArenos said:
Why do people insist on feeding obvious sockpuppets? I've never understood that.

Clint Eastwood hasn't put out a good movie in 20 years, whether directing or acting. I didn't expect this to change anything. It's about as rambling as his empty chair speech was.
The Bridges of Madison County, Million Dollar Baby, Gran Torino, Mystic River, Invictus and Letters From Iwo Jima/Flags of Our Fathers would like a word with you.

As for American Sniper, it seems that almost everyone who reviews it is projecting their political views onto it, whether they're left or right wing. I'm going to wait until it comes out on DVD and make up my own mind.
Huh, I had no idea Invictus was one of Eastwood's, didn't seem his speed. Well live and learn.


OT: I'm thinking of buying the guy's book; I hear a good chunk of the change goes to Veteran's Benefits/Charities so it won't be a total waste if I don't like it, and then watching the movie and see how they stack up. Can't offer a fairer chance than that to try and get my head around the guy.
 

Tojumaru

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Shamanic Rhythm said:
JarinArenos said:
Why do people insist on feeding obvious sockpuppets? I've never understood that.

Clint Eastwood hasn't put out a good movie in 20 years, whether directing or acting. I didn't expect this to change anything. It's about as rambling as his empty chair speech was.
The Bridges of Madison County, Million Dollar Baby, Gran Torino, Mystic River, Invictus and Letters From Iwo Jima/Flags of Our Fathers would like a word with you.

As for American Sniper, it seems that almost everyone who reviews it is projecting their political views onto it, whether they're left or right wing. I'm going to wait until it comes out on DVD and make up my own mind.
Don't leave out Changeling which features Angelina Jolie's best performance(and a claustrophobic execution scene, I was hyperventilating through that whole thing), Space Cowboys(which kind of kickstarted the "old guys kick ass" trend) and Hereafter(which while not great was very interesting visually, and featured great acting from Matt Damon and Cecile de France). I might be the only guy who liked J. Edgar for that very last bit, where the shadow of doubt is cast on the whole affair by Armie Hammer's character calling Hoover a liar.

Also, is the tone of condescension really necessary Bob? "Hey, I told you not to pay to watch this film because I think it sucks, good for me, I am sooooo col, thank me!!!"
 

Souther Thorn

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jacobbanks said:
hermes200 said:
jacobbanks said:
mjharper said:
jacobbanks said:
Izanagi009 said:
jacobbanks said:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.
done nothing to earn it huh? so by that definition, anyone who does not want to or can't fight in a war have done nothing to earn a right that was granted to us by the Bill of Rights rectified in 1791, well before you and I were born.

Also, this movie was not given a limited release to VA organizations or military camps but to the public. As such, I would think that the public, having been the people who watch it, can have an opinion on it regardless of if it's about a veteran or not?
Oh you can have an opinion... it just doesn't matter... and yes... compared to the men and women who have died protecting that piece of paper that says you can say what ever you want, Yes! you've done nothing for it.
You signed up just to spark this debate? Well done.

Also, thanks for dismissing 99.9% of the current population of the Earth as having opinions which don't matter. That's cool too.
I actually did... And oh no, you misunderstand. When it comes to things that are about the effects of coming back from war and the effects of war. Non war veterans and their opinion of said portrayals don't matter. I'm sure if we we're talking about fixing a car or preforming lab research you wouldn't care about the opinion of a non mechanic or non scientist.
Your point is a fallacy for the same reason your other examples are fallacies. It is the same as saying only someone with experience with developing games can have an opinion on games, or only a movie director can have an opinion on movies and/or directing.

But let me put it this way, since I can find testimonials and opinions of veterans that disagree with the narrative you built on the movie, I guess your opinion is just as unimportant...
I would love to discuss this with other veterans... So with that... I guess I will have to get out of this forum hahaha.
Right here Chum. Former CTM/NO.IT, Chief USN. I can see you've got quite the opinion on you so I'll keep this as brief as I can.
You're comporting yourself like an idiot and you are shaming your service by belitteling the civilians that you served here. You do not ask for thanks, you do not say that they have no opinion or one that does not matter. They were your employer, your charge, your duty. They can kick us, beat us, scream and spit at us. The second you strike back or otherwise decide to throw that 'I'm a vet, bruh' demeanor around, you destroy the spirit of the service you did. Carry on with your civilian existence with some dignity man, instead of being another pup with more balls than brains.
 

Macsen Wledig

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Gorrath said:
Macsen Wledig said:
Gorrath said:
Cyberstrike said:
Traun said:
Enosh_ said:
the best thing about American Sniper is the butthurt it caused first by it's sheer existence and then the even bigger one by it's record breaking success
Seriously, it was extremely satisfying seeing Bob cram Palin in there, his sheer butthurt was the sole reason I watched this review.
If turning a lying racist into a hero is your idea of good time.
One can be a lying racist and a hero. Personally, I couldn't stand Chris Kyle but that doesn't mean he wasn't valorous.
No, it's the hiding on roofs and shooting people in the back that would disqualify him from being valorous.
You and I will have to disagree on what constitutes valor then since your definition would disqualify people like Lyudmila Pavlichenko, Roza Shanina, Gary Gordon, Vasily Zaytsev, and Ben Roberts-Smith. I'm not sure what your definition would be but I've a feeling I would find it absurd.
I think it's pretty disgusting that you compare the likes of Vasily Zaytsev & Lyudmila Pavlichenko with Chris Kyle. They were defending their country from invasion not invading anthers to shoot women and children.
 

DayDark

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Macsen Wledig said:
Gorrath said:
Macsen Wledig said:
Gorrath said:
Cyberstrike said:
Traun said:
Enosh_ said:
the best thing about American Sniper is the butthurt it caused first by it's sheer existence and then the even bigger one by it's record breaking success
Seriously, it was extremely satisfying seeing Bob cram Palin in there, his sheer butthurt was the sole reason I watched this review.
If turning a lying racist into a hero is your idea of good time.
One can be a lying racist and a hero. Personally, I couldn't stand Chris Kyle but that doesn't mean he wasn't valorous.
No, it's the hiding on roofs and shooting people in the back that would disqualify him from being valorous.
You and I will have to disagree on what constitutes valor then since your definition would disqualify people like Lyudmila Pavlichenko, Roza Shanina, Gary Gordon, Vasily Zaytsev, and Ben Roberts-Smith. I'm not sure what your definition would be but I've a feeling I would find it absurd.
I think it's pretty disgusting that you compare the likes of Vasily Zaytsev & Lyudmila Pavlichenko with Chris Kyle. They were defending their country from invasion not invading anthers to shoot women and children.
okay i have to ask, do you actually believe what you just wrote? That chris kyle went down there to shoot women and children? Do you believe anyone at all went to war at any point, simply to shoot women and children? I mean i can't understand how someone with that kind of reasoning can exist. i mean i don't even care that much about american sniper, but this is just amazing.
 

Dave Baker

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Abyss said:
There a few users here and there who complain about leftist-propaganda, but what difference does Bob's views make? Don't some of you dislike it when shows or movies you like are accused of being rightist-propaganda? This video barely even constitutes as propaganda: propaganda usually doesn't isn't concerned with painting the big picture of an issue.

Anyway, even though Bob is opposed to the wars and recent Republican-Conservative politics, that's not his complaint. From Bob's point of view, the film would have benefited by being more daring and insightful about the subject on which it is about. Personally, I think that after all these years, there hasn't been a definitive film or movie which stands as an effective commentary upon the post-9/11 period and the two wars. When are we going to see our modern equivalent of Paths of Glory or Dr. Strangelove?

I want to see a film which gets right into the heart of darkness of the period we live in, but not a strictly serious and idealized melodrama. I want to see everyone covered: the nationalists, the soldiers, the innocent bystanders, the not-so innocent bystanders, the demagogues, the fanatics, the practitioners of total warfare, the leaders, and the few people who try to make things better. I want to see Full Metal Jacket crossed with the morality fables of Arabian Nights and Kipling, and combined with the archetypes of Gilgamesh. An existentialist and naturalist response to Lawrence of Arabia whose goals or ethics or not clear.

I want to something based on the wars that unlike any other before, and it still has yet to be made

P.S. I'm rather confused why Bob thinks that the King's Speech is a bad movie. It came out of nowhere, but I guess this goes to show that I can get confused by some of Bob's opinions too.
Jesus Christ, if that movie ever gets made, that would be so amazing. But considering we are living in the Golden Age of Television, an HBO drama like Generation Kill might be more feasible and make more of an impact. This is based on seeing how Game of Thrones takes a similar approach in a fantasy environment and is a veritable pop culture juggernaut.
 

Macsen Wledig

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inu-kun said:
Charcharo said:
inu-kun said:
Haerthan said:
Dude Saddam was an angel compared to what the ISIS is right now. Also I would leave him in power cause he was a counter-balance to Iran. A majority of Iraqis want him back cause guess what: there was order, there was an economy, there was food. Funny how that works. Was he bad? Yea. But there will always be someone worse.
The same way Stalin is an angel compared to hitler?

You know who likes getting rid of Saddam? the Kurds, for example. But if the majority enjoys the tyranny why should anyone stop them?
Stalin is not better then Hitler. In fact... he is probably WORSE.

Hitler is a monster. Stalin... is something even more... I honestly cant say.
That's actually my point, both are evil, you can't quantify evil and say "THAT ONE IS EVILER SO THE OTHER, SO THE OTHER ONE IS GOOD".

You can't honestly say that Saddam is preferable to ISIS, not to mention that it's impossible to know if acting any differently might have prevented ISIS from existing.
Comparing "evils" is quite silly. What can be said though is that the US invasion of Iraq directly led to the creation of ISIS and if the US never invaded Iraq then a lot more people would still be alive today and the region would be a lot more peaceful and secure.

Simply put, no US invasion equals no ISIS.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/dec/11/-sp-isis-the-inside-story
 

Gorrath

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Macsen Wledig said:
Gorrath said:
Macsen Wledig said:
Gorrath said:
Cyberstrike said:
Traun said:
Enosh_ said:
the best thing about American Sniper is the butthurt it caused first by it's sheer existence and then the even bigger one by it's record breaking success
Seriously, it was extremely satisfying seeing Bob cram Palin in there, his sheer butthurt was the sole reason I watched this review.
If turning a lying racist into a hero is your idea of good time.
One can be a lying racist and a hero. Personally, I couldn't stand Chris Kyle but that doesn't mean he wasn't valorous.
No, it's the hiding on roofs and shooting people in the back that would disqualify him from being valorous.
You and I will have to disagree on what constitutes valor then since your definition would disqualify people like Lyudmila Pavlichenko, Roza Shanina, Gary Gordon, Vasily Zaytsev, and Ben Roberts-Smith. I'm not sure what your definition would be but I've a feeling I would find it absurd.
I think it's pretty disgusting that you compare the likes of Vasily Zaytsev & Lyudmila Pavlichenko with Chris Kyle. They were defending their country from invasion not invading anthers to shoot women and children.
If you're going to play games here, I don't want any part of it. Your initial complaint was that his hiding on rooftops and shooting people in the back is what made him lack valor. I merely pointed out that some very valorous people used those same tactics, so don't come back at me with some righteous indignation over the comparison when it directly addresses the flaw in your own point. I have no interest in engaging in conversation if you're going to be disingenuous.

That said, your new point is also vapid. Suggesting that Chris Kyle invaded another country so he could shoot women and children is naive, obnoxious or both. The man earned a lot of criticism through his post-war comments and apparent padding of his biography. That's why I dislike him even though I served in the same dirt with the guy. But to deny that he was valorous under fire and through extreme circumstances while painting him as a mere murderer of women and children demonstrates a total lack of understanding of war or valor. I don't find your opinion to be well informed or even sympathetic. If you've some compelling reasoning behind it, I'd be glad to hear it.
 

Macsen Wledig

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Gorrath said:
If you're going to play games here, I don't want any part of it. Your initial complaint was that his hiding on rooftops and shooting people in the back is what made him lack valor. I merely pointed out that some very valorous people used those same tactics, so don't come back at me with some righteous indignation over the comparison when it directly addresses the flaw in your own point. I have no interest in engaging in conversation if you're going to be disingenuous.

That said, your new point is also vapid. Suggesting that Chris Kyle invaded another country so he could shoot women and children is naive, obnoxious or both. The man earned a lot of criticism through his post-war comments and apparent padding of his biography. That's why I dislike him even though I served in the same dirt with the guy. But to deny that he was valorous under fire and through extreme circumstances while painting him as a mere murderer of women and children demonstrates a total lack of understanding of war ore valor. I don't find your opinion to be well informed or even sympathetic. If you've some compelling reasoning behind it, I'd be glad to hear it.
I don't really care what you're here to do. The fact is Chris Kyle was part of an invasion force from a country which outspent it's victim by billions of dollars, there was nothing valorous about that war, not a single thing. Another fact: Chris Kyle did hide on rooftops, this is part of his role as a sniper. Another fact: Chris Kyle shot women and children, he might not have wanted to do this but that's what happened.

I don't have any "righteous indignation", I just think you are missing some context when you compare Chris Kyle to people who were defending their homes. Chris Kyle wasn't defending his home he was invading someone else's. A more apt analogy would be Chris Kyle is like Josef Allerberger.

One last fact for you to chew on. There is nothing valorous about killing people for money. To quote Herbert Spencer: ?When men hire themselves out to shoot other men to order, asking nothing about the justice of their cause, I don?t care if they are shot themselves.?

http://praxeology.net/HS-FC-20.htm
 

Gorrath

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Macsen Wledig said:
I don't really care what you're here to do.
You've already made this quite clear. Being disingenuous aptly demonstrates that.

The fact is Chris Kyle was part of an invasion force from a country which outspent it's victim by billions of dollars, there was nothing valorous about that war, not a single thing. Another fact: Chris Kyle did hide on rooftops, this is part of his role as a sniper. Another fact: Chris Kyle shot women and children, he might not have wanted to do this but that's what happened.
War is never valorous, people are. This is why I think your idea of valor is bizarre and absurd. Valor is demonstrated by the actions of individuals under extreme circumstances. How they ended up in those circumstances has little bearing on it and how much money their country spent has none whatsoever. No one said he didn't hide on rooftops or shoot women and children, but that wasn't merely what you asserted either. Chris Kyle didn't invade a country to shoot women and children, which is what you actually accused him of.

I don't have any "righteous indignation", I just think you are missing some context when you compare Chris Kyle to people who were defending their homes. Chris Kyle wasn't defending his home he was invading someone else's. A more apt analogy would be Chris Kyle is like Josef Allerberger.
Saying that a comparison disgusts you demonstrates righteous indignation. Righteous indignation is literally being justifiably annoyed or angered at unfair treatment, in this case the unfair treatment being the comparison that was made. You were obviously annoyed (or worse) at the comparison and you obviously think your reaction is justifiable, so how on Earth is that not righteous indignation?

And no, I am not missing any context. Again, you said that he lacked valor because he hid on rooftops and shot people in the back. The other people I compared him to also hid on rooftops and shot people in the back. So either hiding on rooftops and shooting people in the back makes one lack valor or it doesn't. Given that it appears you think Vasily was valorous, you appear to be engaged in special pleading fallacy or else you simply know that your first argument is flat out wrong. You provided no other context for this argument at the time you made it so don't tell me that I am missing context that you didn't provide for your own argument. I am not the one responsible for providing context for your arguments, you are.


One last fact for you to chew on. There is nothing valorous about killing people for money. To quote Herbert Spencer: ?When men hire themselves out to shoot other men to order, asking nothing about the justice of their cause, I don?t care if they are shot themselves.?

http://praxeology.net/HS-FC-20.htm
Are you kidding me? The guy was a Navy Seal, you don't become a Navy Seal for the money! Soldiers get paid like crap! If he was doing it for the money, he would have been over there as a mercenary, not a Seal. And if you think that soldiers don't ask about the justice of their cause, you are once again demonstrating that you've no idea what you're talking about.
 

xServer

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Mezmer said:
I sort of figured this is the kind of direction this movie would have to take, seeing as Chris Kyle, in real life, was a pathological liar and actually posthumously lost a huge defamation lawsuit against one of my home state's former governors. The dude wasn't a good man, and while I respect his service and contribution to the US Navy seals, he doesn't deserve the amount of attention, admiration, and fame being thrown at him because of this film. Whole thing just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
Hello, fellow Minnesotan!

I can't agree enough. I actually got into an argument with a (now-former) Facebook friend over this sudden case of hero-worship sweeping the US due to this movie. People cannot accept that this is a movie and Chris Kyle the man was not the person Bradley Cooper portrayed in the movie. It's become your duty as an American to blindly support Chris Kyle and go see this movie. Oh, and apparently froth at the mouth any time the lawsuit is mentioned. Well, sorry, my brain still touches my spinal chord and I am able to think and opine for myself. Kyle fulfilled his duty to the Navy and his country and should be honored for that service. But he's not a god and I am not going to worship him as though he were. Particularly since I am an atheist (another strike against me, I suppose).
 

xServer

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jacobbanks said:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.
Ridiculous assertion. You don't have to be a soldier or veteran to watch a movie. And not liking a movie is not an attack on soldiers or veterans. You're looking for insults where none have been given. This knee-jerk reaction is unnecessary and unwarranted.

Also, freedom of speech isn't earned. It's a right granted to us through our Constitution.

I honor all the men and women in military service and appreciate the sacrifices they have made and continue to make. But that doesn't mean that each individual man and woman is a saint without flaws. Chris Kyle the man had flaws galore. Even if he was good with a head-shot. They aren't mutually exclusive.