Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Messenger

I haven't seen too many of the fictional Iraq war movies. I liked In the Valley of Elah quite a bit but this might be better if no other reason Paul Haggis had nothing to do with it.

Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson play soldiers who break the news to "N.O.K's" (next of kin) that their loved ones have been killed in Iraq. These scenes are devastating and quite difficult to watch. I've never quite seen scenes like them before. Obviously, there's more to the film than these scenes but they shape everything about the characters.

I've never been a huge fan of Foster's but he was great in this - as was Harrelson. It's a good film and worth definitely worth seeing. Some of the dialogue is a bit clunky yes but the acting was so great that I was able to overlook some of it.

I think a lot of the failed feature films of the past few years about Iraq haven't been sure how to make a political point while at the same entertain and enlighten. While this film isn't perfect by any stretch, it does a pretty good job of all three.

Directed by Owen Moverman
2009
Netflix Streaming

2 comments:

lachima said...

Completely agree on this. Those scenes with the families are devastating.

Listmaker said...

i also kind of liked the star of the week vibe of each person they visited. buscemi! samantha morton!

they should make this a series with a special guest star each week that they can deliver the bad news too. it would be like a really depressing love boat.