Sunday, January 24, 2010
Watched Hurt Locker... again.
I want to like Hurt Locker. I tried to like Hurt Locker. I bit my lip and sat on my profession and gave the film another chance. People tell me it's well written, well directed, and well acted. This time, I watched the film with a collection of non-military family and friends. I gave it an honost try.
However... HURT LOCKER SUCKS.
This remains the single-most unrealistic and unprofessional portrayal of Soldiers in Iraq to date. The Sergeant in this film would have gotten totally burned by his chain of command five minutes into the film. The problem is I'm too close to this and have way to much respect for real Soldiers who go about their business in a professional manner.
These dudes would have never been allowed off the FOB by themselves. Never. Three vehicles is the minimum. EOD never rolls without a platoon in escort. They're too valuable. A colonel would never 'tag along' with an EOD team just to get out of the office, and then wander around an unsecured site while an EOD team does a non-tactical, 3-man clearance of a warehouse. A Soldier leaving the base solo and coming back in plain clothes would have been arrested and hung out to dry. No exceptions. We respect our own safety too much to give the guy a pass. There have been documented incidents of guys who go native try to go out and give intel to the bad guys. How do the Soldiers at the gate know the sergeant wasn't off base helping direct a mortar attack on the FOB?
Hurt Locker makes the rest of us look like a bunch of adventure-hungry, boozing, jack-asses. The leadership in this movie is worse because they actually appear to condone it. The reality is most of us take pride in our job, deal with the challenges, and really only care about getting home to our families without endangering our Soldiers by taking unnecessary risks.
I can't say it's well written because it's flips on its side some basic ideals by which we go about doing business. It's well acted and well shot. The cinematography was excellent. It does represent good storytelling. I just wish they chose a different setting and country. The buffoonery in this film is more applicable to the some third-world military. Not ours.