“The Hurt Locker” begins with a sequence of how Staff Sergeant Thompson is killed during the process of defusing a radio controlled improvised explosive device (IED) in Baghdad. This sets the tone for a grim movie which details the travails of an US Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) unit (fancy name for bomb disposal squad) during the last 30 odd days of their company’s posting in Iraq. Post the demise of their Staff Sergeant, the team is joined by Sgt William James, a battle tested veteran who had already seen some action in Afghanistan as well.
Initially the methods of Sgt James are not understood nor appreciated by Sgt Sanborn and Specialist Eldridge. Both of them think James is too trigger-happy and is more of a cowboy in his approach to defusal of bombs. But as time goes by, and as they see more of James in action, they develop a grudgingly high level of respect for him. While the movie itself doesn’t have too many script-angles or story-plotlines to actually discuss or disclose in this review, suffice to say, it is not too hard to see why this movie won so many accolades.
Having said that, between Avatar and The Hurt Locker, I personally would probably not have given the Best Picture Academy Award to either of them. But then, I am not a member of the Academy nor does my vote count, so I will rest my case here.
Academy Award controversies aside, why you should watch this movie, is primarily to understand at least a little of what US soldiers currently serving in Iraq have to face on a daily basis. While it is easy for us to sit at our homes and criticize what the US govt is doing with its soldiers there, it is completely another thing to watch a reasonably realistic movie which pretty much depicts conditions there (at least from an EOD team perspective). The best part about this movie is the fact that it presents a no-frils version of a war movie (albeit a limited perspective only), and does not take any unnecessary twists or turns with the subject matter.
LAMBScore for this movie