Movie Review: American Sniper
The story that we know about Chris Kyle the American Sniper is one that’s very trumped up. That he never misses, that he would do anything for his country and of course the tragic way he died. Directed by Clint Eastwood this film portrayal based on the book seeks to remind us of how much Chris loved America above all else.
Bradley Cooper is all beefed up for his role as Chris Kyle. American Sniper starts with when Chris was a boy and the powerful lesson his father taught him with his belt in hand about being a sheep, a wolf or a sheepdog. Chris defended his brother but beating the crap out of some kid and then goes and steal a bible from church. A bible he hold onto and keep at his chest while in combat. Fast forward to when he’s older and unfulfilled by being a cowboy. Chris was one of the many who after seeing 9-11 on TV is fueled by a love of country to join the military.
American Sniper followed most of Chris’s tours and how being in combat changes him, it also shows his level of arrogance. He chooses to stop being the sniper in order to go door to door to get info and terrorists. We see the blowback of him being on the ground instead of the eye in the sky but its heralded as how he moved other things forward. No one seems to question that his actions are selfish in ways because he justifies it as the way he kills more of their guys. We also see how war and Chris’s attempts to ignore the PTSD he suffers take a toll on his family. His country means more to his wife (Sienna Miller) and new children. He even seems somewhat disconnected from his brothers in combat. When he runs into his brother Jeff (Keir O’Donnell) when leaving for a tour he doesn’t seem as affected as he should that his brother followed him and is cracking under the pressure.
American Sniper which has some pretty intense combat scenes shows Chris is flawed but as those flaws being less important than the greater good of being a true patriot. It’s an extremely patriotic movie that sweeps his aftershock, his stress and the impact on his family under the rug because of the things he accomplishes. This is a very pro-American movie…there’s nothing wrong with that but it suffers at the idea that the things you deal with by putting your life on the line and to just power thru the rest are what you need to do and what you need to strive for. I like many other Americans felt Chris Kyle was a legend and this makes him legendary but don’t look at these issues he has because it’s just collateral damage we have to accept. While I didn’t enjoy American Sniper as much as I enjoyed Lone Survivor which I also felt was much more intense and more heart-wretching I did enjoy this. I wish it had gone deeper into the Chris Kyle we don’t know.
My Rating: Matinee
Director: Clint Eastwood
Studio: Warner Bros Studios
Release Date: January 16, 2015
Run time: 2 hours 12 minutes
MPAA Rating: R