60/60 Extra: Black Hawk Down.

Note: I'm gonna do this in a Short Review format, because I honestly don't have all that much to say about it.


Premise: A true story of when American soldiers in Mogadishu attempt to capture some somali renegade officials and end up getting two of their Black Hawk helicopters shot down and have to brave out the dangerous streets for hours until rescue can come for them.

Starring: Josh Hartnett, Ewan McGregor, Tom Sizemore, Eric Bana, William Fichtner, Ewen Bremner, Kim Coates, Ioan Gruffudd, Jason Isaacs, Jeremy Piven, Tom Hardy, George Harris, Ty Burrell, Zeljko Ivanek, Hugh Dancy, and Orlando Bloom.

My Reaction: Seriously, who isn't in this movie? Anyway, the cinematography bugged me at times, particularly near the beginning. The movie is basically 20 minutes of setup and 2 hours of literally non-stop action. It's like every man, woman, and child in that town owns an assault rifle and an RPG/rocket launcher. I know this really happened, but it almost felt ridiculous after a while. Unfortunately, even with such a strong cast, the movie doesn't utilize them. You don't get to know really any of them, which means character development is little to none. I couldn't even tell you their names outside of Orlando Bloom's Blackburn, and even then I would have told you "blackbird." I have to be honest, though... I was pretty bored after a while and was just waiting for it to end. It does have some entertainment value, but that only goes so far when you're doing the exact same, non-stop thing for 2 straight hours.

Stop Saying OK! OK.


  1. You touch on something that I come across during war films every so often - not getting to know the characters.

    But it leads me to ask, is it always important to get to know the characters when the characters are soldiers of one unit? The story in this instance felt like it was more about the mission, and less about the men...no?

  2. Sure, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

  3. For some reason I gravitate towards war films that aren't as interested in developing their characters.

    I like this film a lot. It's a fantastic look at modern combat and looks amazing. Plus, that soundtrack is amazing.

    One of the better Ridley Scott films in my opinion.

  4. This might be my favourite war film of the 00s, and I including THE HURT LOCKER in that list. The action and sound design is obviously phenomenal; I'd have to disagree about the camera work too, as I really like the "on the ground" feel it lends the film.

    As for not getting to know the characters, I think this is actually a big plus. When compared to the disingenuous attempts of so many war films (I'm thinking recently of BATTLE: LA, or even the other two bomb tech guys in THE HURT LOCKER) to give their characters back stories, the fact that these guys were basically just grunts made it all the more effective. And personally, when they were injured or killed, the acting and filmmaking was good enough that I felt it on an emotional level even when I didn't know the characters name.

    Still, I get your point of view, and if you weren't enjoying it by about forty-five minutes in, another ninety minutes of the same stuff probably isn't going to change your mind.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.