Path of a warrior
It can be argued Clint Eastwood glorified Chris Kyle's actions and the questionable decisions he made during his service. It can be argued the director took some liberties on the portrayal of what went on in the war in Iraq. It can also be argued that his film foregoes key details on the late Navy SEAL's autobiography novel in favor of giving us a Hollywood glossed-over story. Regardless of what anyone may think watching American Sniper, one thing I have come to accept is that films based on real-life people or events never accurately follow the actual facts and sometimes form their own story based on the source; the truth being told through fiction. In this case, American Sniper, an adaptation based on the autobiography by the late Chris Kyle, works best as the typical film that portrays the story of a man who answers the call of duty, and the tribulations he deals with when he returns home. As a child, Chris is taught by his father that three different types of people exist in this world: the sheep, who are do not acknowledge the existence of evil in the world, the wolves, who prey upon the weak, and lastly the sheepdogs, those with the will and desire to stand up against the wolves and greater evil to protect the weak. A few years pass and a now adult Chris (Bradley Cooper) enlists in the Navy Seals and quickly moves through his sniper training where it turns out he's a natural behind a sniper rifle. Chris becomes a full-fledged U.S. Navy Seal sniper, and marries his girlfriend Taya (Sienna Miller), and ships off to Iraq shortly after the September 11 attacks. During his first tour, Chris immediately racks up a list of successful confirmed kills, earning him the title of "Legend" from his fellow soldiers and "The Devil" from his enemies. Despite his successful kill count and saving countless lives and soldiers, the war changes Chris. No longer capable of being the same person he was before, Chris returns home only to fight another war: re-assimilating back into his normal life. I have
mixed feelings about American Sniper, more so about how the movie unfolded than how Chris Kyle was portrayed. Just to point out, Bradley Cooper did a hell of a job playing as Chris Kyle. He's not just acting like him, he IS him; from his mannerisms to his posture, Bradley manifests the late Navy SEAL's spirit with honor. His portrayal is actually the major highlight of the whole film. The problem is.....everything else. Somewhere along the way, Eastwood took several detours on Chris' odyssey in Iraq, adding events that never occurred and people that never existed. Sometimes, changes such as these are necessary to help a film's
story move organically but in this case, it detracts the viewer from
the real story of the events that actually happened. Honestly, I didn't see the necessity of adding these changes to Chris' already intriguing story or for what reason these events weren't touched upon. In any case, it unfortunately makes the story feel incomplete, like a book with missing chapters. To reiterate, this is just my opinion of how I felt upon watching the film; it's neither perfect nor a mess. In any case, American Sniper gets merit for reminding us that for a soldier, the first casualty of war isn't their enemy but their humanity.
-Reviewed by Razor, 5/26/15
-Reviewed by Razor, 5/26/15