Review: Army of One
(M) Nicolas Cage, Russell Brand
Based on an incredibly true story, one of the year’s strangest movies has Nicolas Cage as a motormouth crackpot who claims he is on a mission from God. His mission? Hunt down The Most Wanted Man in the World – Osama bin Laden.
Turning up on-screen in the shape of controversial comedian Russell Brand, God visits US construction worker Gary Faulker (Cage) in visions. Although Faulkner seems an unlikely instrument of God’s judgment, he buys a samurai sword and plots how he’s going to singlehandedly invade Pakistan and flush out bin Laden.
Adrift between satire and reverence, Army of One is a wonky biopic fuelled by Cage pushing the boundaries of mania. Viewers won’t find much to hold on to as the telling of Faulkner’s 2010 crusade often traps us in awkward scenes of possible delusion. But even as Army of One runs on the spot with Faulkner’s hyperactive blather, you can’t overlook a powerful challenge: how can we know what God wants us to do? Could God really show up and ask us to do something like ‘go get Osama’? Who am I to say Faulkner is making all of this up?
Ben McEachen from The Big Picture dives headfirst into the huge issues raised by Faulkner’s mission. Check out the video where Ben suggests that, actually, there are ways to check whether it is God who is speaking with you.