Lone Survivor: Movie Review

"Lone Survivor" will bring shock and awe with its unabashed gore and unnerving action sequences. So effective are they that at times, you could feel the crunch and pain our protagonists eventually find themselves in. Sadly, the action-heavy film tends to confound belief as the team of soldiers seems to transform from mere men to little Rambos. Worse, the film feels less effective in terms of bringing some emotional depth as it forgot that more than the action, we really wanted to know the modern-day heroes that actually inspired the material.

The film is based on the failed mission, Operation Red Wings, that occurred back in June 28, 2005. Marcus Luttrell (Mark Wahlberg) together with his squad mates, Michael Murphy (Taylor Kitsch), Danny Dietz (Emile Hirsch) and Matthew Axelson (Ben Foster), find themselves in deep trouble as their decision to release three goat herders who they accidentally bump into during the mission have brought Taliban forces all over them. Surrounded, outnumbered and without clear communication with their base, these four men will show great courage, survival and heroism along the way.

"Lone Survivor" will peak your interest with its in-your-face action but it might also turn you off with its shallow take on our four main protagonists. The film, to say the least, has its own vibe and feel. The action in particular is surprisingly real. You feel every bullet hitting and bones breaking as it plays with both your eyes and ears. The action sequences are crisp and clear and the sound effects are something to hear and we could easily say that the film in fact is an aural and visual feast. As for the cast, it felt perfect. Acting-wise, all leads performed well and theirs made this experience feel more authentic. Unfortunately, we also felt that their talents were under-utilized with shoddy characterization. As a matter of fact, minus the very quick introduction on the first five to ten minutes of the film, we never get to know our characters much. We know some are married and really love their wives or even one has a marriage underway, but that was about it. Overall, we really enjoyed "Lone Survivor" as an action and war film. It could have been classic material though if it has that dramatic side as well.

Rating: 4 reels

Why you should watch it:
- action-heavy, the film is a thrill to see and hear to say the least

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- action-heavy, the film was lopsided in terms of character development

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