April, 1945. As the Allies make their final push in the European Theatre, a battle-hardened Army sergeant named Wardaddy (Brad Pitt) commands a Sherman tank and his five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Outnumbered, and out-gunned, Wardaddy and his men face overwhelming odds in their heroic attempts to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.
I knew that quite a few people had complained about the realism in this movie even though it hold high ratings on most movie sites. I was hoping that the complaints were mostly nitpicking like wrong model of Sherman tank and such like. Well, I am afraid that it was a bit more than that. I would say that this movie is clearly written by some Hollywood writer sitting in his comfy chair and never ever having been close to any military activities, not to mention live action, in his life.
I can live with a movie being inaccurate or somewhat unrealistic if the rest of the movie is good but I have to say that I did not really like the movie even after trying to filter out the unrealistic nonsense.
The movie is very dark and gritty and there are really no likeable characters in it whatsoever. Well, the clerk that got thrown in as a tank machinegun gunner was perhaps somewhat likable but then him getting assigned as a tank machinegun gunner in the first place was one of those nonsensical bits. In this movie the “heroes” are not really any better than the Nazis. The scene where “Wardaddy” forces previously mentioned clerk to shoot an unarmed POW is just disgusting. I am sure this is not too far from reality in some cases during the war but I’ll be damned if I am watching a movie to be entertained by it.
Having said that I must also say that the movie was very well done in terms of acting and cinematography with one exception. The ridiculous overuse of tracer bullet effects. Tracer bullets do not look like you are in a Star Wars movie and yes I have been using tracer bullets during my military service, obviously unlike the producer and consultants (if they had any) of this movie.
The pacing of the movie was somewhat uneven. Some of it was fairly fast paced but then some parts, like the part in the apartment of the two German women was quite slow and somewhat dull.
The “last stand” at the end was just silly and nonsensical. It started pretty much right away when the poor clerk spots the arriving German infantry just using his eyes. Then it just takes forever until they actually arrive so our “heroes” have all the time in the world to prepare. There would of course be no way for a lone Sherman to hold off an assault like that and the Germans would of course not be charging around shooting useless fine caliber weaponry against said Sherman. Also when they had all this time to prepare why the f… did they leave some of the ammo outside the tank? Obviously because some dumb scriptwriter thought it would make for a good scene. And do not get me started on the fact that the Germans apparently just stops in their tracks every time the director thinks it is time for some slow scene inside the tank.
The ending? Well I do not like bad endings and this one certainly did not give me any feeling of reward for having suffered through over two hours of this movie. Needless to say I am a tad disappointed.