1 hour ago
Monday, 3 November 2014
The scene is Germany 1945 (it's actually filmed in England) with the Nazis almost on their last legs, though with superior panzer power and sheer desperation on their side, giving all they've got to the survival of their 'Vaterland'.
To Wardaddy's (Pitt's) dismay he has callow, bible-scrupled Shia la Beouf seconded to his unit, less than two months in the army and incapable of shooting anyone at all, even under orders.
Much of the film is set in the claustrophobic tank (nicknamed 'Fury') with crew getting in each others way and barking at each other, including predictably crude humour.
The only respite from the actions of tank advance interrupted by gory visions of warfare, is a significantly prolonged central scene when Pitt and La Beouf enter a house to find two youngish, German, non-English speaking women. (Pitt speaks a modicum of German here as well as in patches elsewhere). The two Americans try to gain the nervous women's respect until, a few minutes later, the rest of the tank unit arrive..........
It's a well-made film. No quarrel at all with the effects which were totally convincing to me. But as to having light and shade, there was virtually none. Although the violence (all of it being the effects of warfare), is very graphic, none of those shots of killing and maiming are lingered over.
Occasionally the heavy, sombre music did get in the way, and I found some of the depictions of the German soldiers barely avoiding tipping over into being hackneyed.
Acting was good and, though it might pain me just a little to say it, the honours go to LaBouef who really nails the portrayal of his green, reluctantly-serving character. Pitt played his superman persona much as one would expect. I'd also single out Michael Pena as the Mexican-born member of the tank crew.
Direction by David Ayer was all one could wish for.
It's not a film I can say I enjoyed - it wasn't intended to be one of those. It's a gruelling journey, but if you like a generous quota of blood and guts, this will supply it for you.
Current average IMDb score exceeds 8. My personal rating is...................6.