The Hurt Locker: Film Review


The trouble I faced with watching this film was the disappointment I felt. The Oscars promised a film set apart from others. I’m not entirely sure what it was about The Hurt Locker that won it six Oscars. Although it did provide an insight into the experiences of our ‘fighting men and women’, it is a typical product from the US, depicting themselves as unsung heroes. I have no doubt that those fighting for freedom, whichever nationality, are indeed heroes and should be treated as such. However, watching the film and watching true life events unfold in the Middle East,  I could understand why the Iraqi’s were not altogether welcoming of the American presence in their country. To enter a country with all guns blazing may not be the appropriate stance to take and may indeed have contributed to growing anti-US and anti-Western opinions in Iraq, Afghanistan and the majority of the Middle East.

The fact the film was directed by a woman, Kathryn Bigelow, is a cause for celebration and may lay the foundations for a less male dominated Oscars. Experiencing the low budget film making of The Hurt Locker meant you will be completely immersed within the story and not side-tracked by the usual blockbuster special effects.

Despite this, there is nothing that stood out for me while watching this film. What worries me is that myself and a lot of other people are now desensitised to events. Often there is not a day that goes by when the war in Afghanistan or Iraq is not on the news. For me, unfortunately, The Hurt Locker contributes to this. It also increased the anger at the unjustness of it all. Although every death can in its own right be deemed as ‘unjust’, but for a war to be declared on a false premise is all the more infuriating.

For me, the only memorable part of the film was the friendship between Beckham, an Iraqi boy and Staff Sergeant William James (Jeremy Renner) and watching that friendship unfold. The rest, I regret, is lost in the continuing US self-promotion. At least Kathryn Bigelow did not attempt to re-write history as so many Directors of war films have done before her. I admired her attempt at finding a story behind the politics and a story on ground level, unfortunately as with all wars, the underlying factor is always politcial.

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ben Hoffman
    Mar 16, 2010 @ 14:53:08

    Yeah, but stuff gets blowed up real good in the movie. 🙂

    Reply

  2. cr
    Mar 16, 2010 @ 17:37:57

    I agree about not knowing why it won so many Oscars. It was good but not outstanding. But did reinforce the futility of war and the heroism of those we send to fight on our behalf.

    Reply

  3. P.J.
    Mar 16, 2010 @ 19:55:17

    The friendship between James and Beckham is my favourite part of the movie too. However the film could focus further on it and even base the whole film on something like that. I liked the film, but when you hear it has won 6 Oscars, it just doesn’t match with what you see!

    Reply

  4. Haulguild
    Apr 08, 2010 @ 09:10:21

    i like this film, thanks for your posting

    Reply

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