Well, this is an interesting one for me because I’m not a huge fan of war movies (watched far too many when a youngster as my Dad absolutely loved them, historically accurate or not), and I’m kind of ambivalent about whether we’re still too close to events in Afghanistan and Iraq to be depicting them in movies.

On the other hand this is the film that got Kathryn Bigelow the Best Director award, the first woman to do so, and from that perspective alone it has to be worth a go.

So, The Hurt Locker starts right in the middle of the action when poor old Guy Pearce gets blown up and is replaced by Jeremy Renner, a different kettle of fish altogether (if I can use a well-worn cliché, and I think I can) who clearly gets off on the adrenaline rush of the work he does (which is bomb disposal in case you hadn’t worked that out). The film is basically about how he fits in with the tight-knit team that he is now effectively leading, and his rather gung-ho attitude to it all when all they really want to do is make it through the remaining few weeks of their tour of duty alive.

Things loved = I really liked the episodic nature of the story, I suspect a lot of the time war is boredom punctuated by bits of excitement; I had never seen Jeremy Renner in anything before and liked him a great deal; some very nice cameos especially Ralph Fiennes (but poor old Guy Pearce)

Things not so liked = I found the end a little abrupt and confusing, not sure if it was a flash back or flash forward at first

Rating stuff = 15 (strong language and gory images – especially stuff around body bombs which I knew nothing about before watching this, and wished I hadn’t learned what I did)

Tissue count = 0

Safety cushion = tense in places but not so much that I needed artificial support

So one of the things to say about this is that I’m glad I watched it, it provoked a bit of a discussion around the whole war in Iraq situation chez Bride but I’m still undecided on the whole war film thing and if anything my final feeling was one of detachment  – I didn’t want any of the characters to die but beyond that I wasn’t really engaged with them. So a picture for the brain but not one for the heart, in my case.

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