This weekend I went to go see the newly released movie “Lone Survivor,” starring Mark Wahlberg. From seeing the trailer I could tell that it was going to be a fairly intense movie, but I figured it would also be the typical war movie – glamorized, patriotic, and making all the men in the theatre want to walk out and immediately enroll in the army. Boy, was I wrong.
“Lone Survivor” hardly wasted any time in getting to the good stuff. At the beginning of the movie, there is just enough time provided for the viewer to learn about the characters – their friendship, and what is waiting for them back home. And then after you have been tactfully exposed to their lives, the action starts. And it doesn’t end until the final credits roll.
The film, which is based on of a true story, follows four NAVY SEALS, all of which are friends, on a mission to kill a dangerous Taliban member. He is wanted for killing twenty Marines in one week. From the start, the mission doesn’t go well. Their planned lookout spot has an obstructed view of the village, prompting them to move to the top of a peak, where goat herders happen upon them.
After a conflict of morals, the herders are released, upon which they return to the village and the four friends begin the fight for their lives. Every time you think they might catch a break, another hurdle is thrown at them. They push their bodies past the breaking point, and then more. One by one, they die, leaving only the lone survivor. Hence the title of the movie.
I’m not usually a crier during movies. Especially over a war movie. And especially when in a theater. But about halfway through the movie the waterworks started, and they didn’t end until twenty minutes after we had left the theater and had sat down for lunch. Before the credits rolled, pictures of those who had been involved in the real mission were projected onto the screen, along with pictures of their families, videos of their weddings and their names. It was heartbreaking. The movie was raw and powerful. It did not glamorize their jobs, and instead showed the reality of what the men in Afghanistan have to face. It was action and adrenaline-packed. It was brutal and intense. And it was really really good.
I was not the only one crying during that movie. It’s hard to watch, but worth watching.