The Hurt Locker

The Hurt Locker

(MA) Roadshow DVD/BD

While some consider it a cardinal sin to dare question any Oscar-winning movie, The Hurt Locker isn’t the greatest war film ever. Repeat, isn’t the greatest war film ever.

Now that’s out of the way, prepare thyself for an incredibly taut and nail-biting study of one man who constantly works at the volatile precipice of life and death.

Those seeking commentary about the theatre of war or what happens behind the scenes must look elsewhere — try exceptional mini-series Generation Kill, for a start.

Stellar director Kathryn Bigelow largely ignores the big picture to focus grittily upon Sergeant First Class William James (Oscar-nominated Jeremy Renner) and his bomb disposal work in Iraq during 2004.

Why James only feels alive when trying to defuse death’s devices is the underlying mystery of The Hurt Locker, and a superb lesson in on-screen tension.

However, for a more altruistic, meaningful and earth-shattering portrait of one man choosing to put his life on the line for others, turn to the New Testament and look up “Jesus”.

Ben McEachen

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