Lone Survivor (2013) - Review

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I watched this film almost 24 hours ago and I have had to wait that time in order to fully appreciate what I watched and let my final opinions shine through.

I think I'll start by pointing out how bad I thought this film was going to be, I'll make a point about how I normally absolutely hate American films concerning war, as I believe they're just used as a propaganda market for their concerned citizens and as good as this film turned out to be, I still hate that it contained these elements. The best example is that the extraction team was supposed to be supported by Apache gunships, but due to underfunding, the gunships were needed on another operation and were away when the extraction teams were needed - blatant propaganda saying that the army needs funding for more gunships.

Now with that out of the way - this film was based on a true story and I actually quite enjoyed it, there is no denying that at times this film can drag it's feet and be so utterly boring you want to switch it off or walk out, however, I urge you to hang in there for the last half because as soon as the fire-fight starts, the film finally gets it's act together and interests you. 

Where the acting is concerned, again the first half is boring chatting, military life that I had no interest in, but when people start dying, you see the team become new people - the brotherhood of these men really shines through and the actors capture their willingness to put their lives on the line for each other and, if needed, die for each other. This also gives you a new perspective as you remember that this is a true story, and the brotherhood that Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Emile Hirsch and Ben Foster portray is actually based on the real brotherhood of the SEALs they are playing, and their willingness to put everything on the line for each other.

The main thing I want to point out, is the way in which Wahlberg's character was saved ... Now in an American film concerning war with the Middle East, I think we can all be forgiven for thinking there might be a small amount of typical characteristics shown towards the Taliban and Middle Eastern people. Whilst there IS a young boy who is portrayed as a complete moron, with no respect ... The ending shows a tribe of people in a completely different light than I think they have ever been shown before. The tribe save Wahlberg's character and are willing to fight against the Taliban and get themselves slaughtered purely due to a tradition called Pashtunwali - this says that the tribe must safeguard an individual from his enemies, no matter the cost. I don't know if this tradition or behaviour is well known, but I think it's amazing that this film went out of it's way to explain this to the audience and again, when you think that out there in the real world is the tribe that were willing to die for an unknown American individual, who has essentially invaded their land, you really start to think about how amazing human nature can be, even in times of war and suffering.

Overall, this film can be extremely long and boring if it's not what you're into ... But I think if you stick it out to the end you may come out a changed person - there may even be a few tears shed at the bonds between, not only the SEALs, but between Mark Wahlberg and those that saved him in the end. Way above my own expectations, I truly think this is an epic film and I urge you to watch it.

About the author


I have always loved film and have an almost eidetic memory for those that I have seen ... As I also love to write I figured I'd mix the two and try film blogging - I can see a lot of new releases and want to share my experiences with…

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