The hurt locker (2008, USA)

hurtlockerI admit I watched The hurt locker because the star power drew me in and I hoped for a good action flick. I was disappointed on both account, but found the film still interesting and emotion provoking. I was expecting to see the big names I was familiar with (Guy Pearce, Ralph Fiennes, David Morse and Evangeline Lilly) in substantial roles but each got only a few minutes long role. But as I realized soon enough these short appearance fit this type of movie well. There was plenty of action in the film, but not the exaggerated Hollywood style you are used to, where everything turns out fine and the good guys always win. No, this was a “day in the life of…” style storytelling. More precisely weeks in the life of a bomb-squad unit in Iraq. It shows the everyday life of the specialist (and his team mates), who day after day have to go in to hair raising situations, diffuse bombs and save lives. It did not show the Iraqis as evil guys or the American soldiers as good guys only. Instead it showed everybody as human with conflicting values and interests. This was the movie’s real shock value, not the exploding bombs. This was one of the more depressing movies I have seen recently, but experienced as a great reminder how lucky I am for where I was born and the choices I can select from. The people there (on both sides) have way less options and most of them are wrong anyway.

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