American Sniper deserves all of its accolades and at 84 years old Eastwood still has it in him to make something genuinely special. If you’re looking for a more adult oriented movie to watch which is directed by someone who knows what they’re doing and a cast at the top of their game then check this out, you won’t be disappointed.
Plot: Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle’s pinpoint accuracy saves countless lives on the battlefield and turns him into a legend. Back home to his wife and kids after four tours of duty, however, Chris finds that it is the war he can’t leave behind.
Review: Clint Eastwood once again proves that he’s one of the all time great directors with this engaging story about the “legend” Chris Kyle, played to perfection by Bradley Cooper who has long since proven he is one of the best actors working in Hollywood today.
He gives a powerhouse performance as Kyle; a man who is a hero to his fellow SEALs and Marines but struggles to find his place back in the States. In that respect it’s quite reminiscent of The Hurt Locker but the story is suitably different to grab you from the very second it starts. If you know the story of what happened to Chris Kyle then you know how this movie ends which makes it a tough watch and incredibly moving too.
He really went through Hell in Iraq and the awful things he witnessed would screw up anyone’s head; this isn’t a “fun” action movie but more of a war drama with genuinely harrowing battle scenes. It isn’t glorified in any way and really feels authentic. I think I maybe use that word a lot in reviews but for this movie it’s certainly apt.
American Sniper is beautifully directed with some amazing shots, including some rather spectacular aerial photography. Eastwood is an old-school film-maker so he doesn’t need of the crappy fast cuts or shaky cam. He can actually direct action scenes and we can always see what’s going on.
The acting by the entire cast is pretty much Oscar-worthy and not just by Bradley Cooper; Sienna Miller plays Kyle’s long suffering wife Taya and your heart breaks for her, especially when she is on the phone to him and he starts getting shot at. You can only imagine what Taya went through in real life as any military wife must go through any time their husband goes off to war.
The nightmarish scenarios these men face every moment while trying to make life and death decisions only makes me respect what they do all the more; Eastwood manages to get that across in the film without it ever being jingoistic.
I also noticed that there is barely any music score in it; these days in most films the dialogue is usually drowned out by noisy music but in this you can hear all the dialogue perfectly and Eastwood manages to build tension with great performances and camera work.
There appears to be a trend these days for movies to never be 90 minutes in length; they always have to be really long and this is another movie like that. We get the point about Kyle’s struggles early enough in the movie and it does go on a little long. A few moments could probably have been cut just for length purposes. It’s never boring though and Cooper is so great in the role that you won’t take your eyes off the screen for a second.
Overall, American Sniper deserves all of its accolades and at 84 years old Eastwood still has it in him to make something genuinely special. If you’re looking for a more adult oriented movie to watch which is directed by someone who knows what they’re doing and a cast at the top of their game then check this out, you won’t be disappointed.