Published On: Fri, Jan 10th, 2014

‘Lone Survivor’ Review: A great tribute but fails to make intended connections

Sadly the title has a positive and negative influence on the audience’s experience of the film. Lone Survivor is an emotional and violent rollercoaster directed by Peter Berg.

Lone Survivor cast photo Taylor Kitsch Mark WahlbergAdapted from the memoirs of former SEAL Marcus Luttrell (Mark Wahlberg), Lone Survivor recreates an ill-fated 2005 mission to take down a high-ranking Taliban target (Ahmad Shah) that went south for a team of four Navy SEALs, leading to a firefight that Luttrell alone was lucky enough to survive (in total, 19 soldiers were lost in the ensuing skirmish).

There’s no spoiler alert here and sadly many viewers will wait to see this film and miss out on great editing and amazing sound design. Cracked bones and injuries leap from the screen and are almost shared with the audience.

Lone Survivor posterIn additional to Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch plays the team leader Michael Murphy with Emile Hirsch and Ben Foster rounding out the core team. Eric Bana, Scott Elrod and Alexander Ludwig highlight a great cast with great chemistry.

The story is great recount of an American tragedy and a tribute to those lost in this mission. Poor planning, terrible communication, and some bad luck is not how Americans want to know we lost Navy SEALS. Offering little else, the battle scenes are intense and increasingly grueling as the audience knows by the title (and the opening scene) where this story is headed.

Lone Survivor is no Saving Private Ryan or Zero Dark Thirty. It’s a great war film and if the violence doesn’t bother you, then may be among your favorite.

Sadly though, Berg doesn’t make the connections he was shooting for and the film is a great tribute, with little more to offer.

Overall Lone Survivor receives 3 1/2 stars out of 5

Lovers of war films and those with strong ties to the military will likely enjoy the film most, so add another star.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON


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