Recently I have developed a peculiar dislike for Mark Wahlberg, I think it simply stemmed from a couple of films that he stars in that I didn’t really enjoy. Naturally as I saw the trailers for Lone Survivor I let out a little groan as I saw Wahlberg appear however everything else really did appeal to me and I managed to get to the cinema despite my gripe with Wahlberg.
I am so glad I decided to see it! Lone Survivor is based around a true story and as I have said before when films are grown out of these stories it naturally puts a lot more weight and emotion behind it, helping to create a better sense of reality and a more involved way of story telling. I really did love this film, however there are a few issues that I had – so lets talk about them first. If you are a frequent reader of my blog you know that I will let you know at the top of my reviews if they feature spoilers, well I am afraid that by calling this film ‘Lone Survivor’ it delivers the biggest spoiler before you even step foot into the cinema! This problem isn’t helped by the start of the film as we see Wahlberg’s character Marcus being nursed after his rescue, but it is only Marcus who has been rescued. The film could have been so much more emotive and effective if these elements had been tweaked allowing the viewer to become more involved with all the characters.
My only other issue with the film, and it is more of an observation was simply the contrast in tone in certain points of the film. Up until Marcus is the only survivor of the 4 Navy Seals the film is real, gritty and distinctive. Now this is still the case afterwards however once the story shifts to the village at time the whole production felt a lot more ‘Hollywood’. Now I love Hollywood films however I just picked up one a noticeable change in the tone, it didn’t necessarily annoy me but I noticed it and I think Lone Survivor could have benefited from a more consistent tone.
Enough of that though as there was so much I loved about this film. Firstly it had some beaut landscape shots and I really enjoyed seeing these, they were used effectively too. The soundtrack was great and the use of sound throughout was great at portraying the chaotic battlefield. All of the main four actors did a wonderful job at playing their roles and they helped to bring the reality of the story to the forefront, even Wahlberg didn’t irritate me and Lone Survivor has certainly helped me to begin to warm to him again! The truth in this story is the magnificent thing, and it is wonderful to see the relationships between the men featured. These men really did fight here, just take some time to remember that. Even if you don’t enjoy the film you can’t help but be humbled by the fitting tribute at the end of the film – this was a highlight for me and I think the whole thing was handled very well.
BIGGEST FLAW – The title #spoileralert
BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT – The tribute to the Navy Seals of Operation Red Wings
Lone Survivor is a wonderful portrayal of this incredible true story. A film that should be enjoyed by a wide audience, it is violent and it does remind me of 12 Years a Slave. In terms of educating audiences in these true events they both do a magnificent job, however the difference is I would most definitely re-watch Lone Survivor and I have no problem saying that this is my film of the year so far. Loved it.
Rating – 8.5/10