Friday, November 10, 2006

Review: Flags of Our Fathers

Clint Eastwood's latest film, Flags of Our Fathers, is a gorgeously shot film about the Battle of Iwo Jima and the soldiers who raised the American flag. It probably has the most beautifully executed war re-enactment since what we saw in Saving Private Ryan (directed by Steven Spielberg, who incidentally is one of the producers of Flags), combining sheer artistry with stark realism and bloody gore (flying heads and spilling entrails a-plenty). Adam Beach is given a lot of the key dramatic scenes, which he pulls off adequately, and Ryan Philippe is, as usual, pleasantly competent though not striking. Overall, however, the film is lukewarm and constantly in danger of being overly dramatic. While it works well in some scenes (for instance, when Doc remembers Iggy and each of the other flag-raisers in their last moments), the style used in interspersing flashbacks with flashbacks is a rather tired cliche. A note on the score: it functions in this film by subtly playing on the emotional content of certain scenes, but it is nearly indistinct from Eastwood's score in his most recent films. He should probably hire someone else for his next project. Eastwood's latest film is ultimately pleasing but fails to involve at least this viewer. Grade: B

Image from IMDb

No comments: