"I've been around the world twice and talked to everyone once."
Whole-lee sh#&. This movie was incredible. It may not quite be movie of the year, but Peter Berg should win director of the year hands down. The former director of Friday Night Lights, despite his talent, sometimes has a suspect picker when it comes to screen plays (Hancock/Battleship). Not so with his latest release centered around true events of a clandestine mission in Afghanistan that went sideways. From the title we go into this movie knowing the ending, but what is unexpected is how craftfully this story is told. This film is beautifully vicious and savagely touching on many levels. It is filmed through a truly artistic prism and is a must see. I am very fond of the band Explosions In the Sky and Berg again taps them to haunt the score of his scenes. The cinematography is refulgent, the acting superb and the sequence where the troops spill down the side of a shale cliff is staggering to say the least. Anyone can make a simplistic military movie that blows everything up and leaves everybody wounded, but Lone Survivor will leave you thinking about war on a much deeper level.
The core of this story is the relationship of the team assembled to take out a top Taliban leader. These men have a passion for living and dying for each other and all parts are played incredibly. Leading the charge is Tim Riggins (Taylor Kitsch) flanked by his right hand man Marcus (Mark Wahlberg). The team is stranded mountainside and faces a quandary when their position is stumbled upon by seemingly innocent goat herders. Taking the moral approach, the team cuts loose the herders and aborts the compromised mission. However, a quick extraction quickly dissipates when all communications are lost due to rugged Afghany terrain. Sure enough, the Taliban learns of their presence and all hell breaks loose. Literally. The quiet, serene mountainside transforms into a battlefield as a flood of enemy fire engulfs our heroes.
Say what you want about war time situations, but I my opinion this movie is a reminder that the men and women fighting abroad are human beings and have a remarkably unbreakable bond between them. I am not going turn this entry into a soapbox for my own feelings toward war, but when watching this film, it just struck a cord with how deep these relationships run. Much like the classics Band of Brothers and All Quiet on The Western Front, this movie with be talked about and remembered for a very long time. Berg ends things in a touching way that humanizes the violence committed and pays an emotionally tribute to the lives lost during the mission. See this, stat.