Director: David Ayer
Starring: Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Michael Peña, Jon Bernthal
Release Date: October 17, 2014
David Ayer's ability to write a script involving characters in law enforcement of any sort has always been his forte, being that he is responsible for the writing behind Training Day
, End of Watch
Ayer returns as not only the writer but as the director for his latest script, Fury
. This time his script takes us far back to April 1945, the final stretch of World War II. Joining him is an all-star cast (on all levels) of Brad Pitt
, Shia LaBeouf
, Logan Lerman
, Michael Peña
, and Jon Bernthal
, all Ayer's main subjects. Unfortunately, Fury
is filled with plot holes and war cliches causing Ayer to take a step in the wrong direction in his script writing.
April, 1945. As the Allies make their final push in the European Theatre, a battle-hardened army sergeant named Wardaddy (Brad Pitt) commands a Sherman tank and his five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Outnumbered and outgunned, and with a rookie soldier thrust into their platoon, Wardaddy and his men face overwhelming odds in their heroic attempts to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.
With the majority of the film focused on Don 'Wardaddy' Collier's crew, the first job Ayer should have addressed was developing all five of the characters. This isn't a police car like Ayer is used to dealing with in films such as Training Day and End of Watch in which you only had to worry about the people in the front of the car. No, this time we are in a tank and instead of a two man crew, we have a five man team. Instead, Ayer decides to focus on the Sergeant and the newcomer, Norman. To only purely focus on two of five characters that are in such a closed space as a tank is ludicrous. Besides, in the first fifteen minutes of the film you don't learn anything new about the other three members and they just end up being war-cliches like 'the Mexican', 'the bad guy' and 'the preacher'.
Not to take anything away from Wardaddy and Norman's story line as it does bring some depth and emotion to the film but Ayer never wraps up their relationship either. Their relationship begins with Wardaddy forcing Norman to kill a man for the first time in his life. Showing the viewers that innocence is the first to die in war. Midway into the film, the two spend a rare day off with two females which plays as a wonderful step in their relationship and leaves you with a feeling that something is coming that will not only change their relationship but the entire basis of the film. Those feelings never get satisfied as that scene plays as the last development in their relationship. What a let down.
Just in case you forgot by reading the review thus far, Fury is a war movie and you will see a lot of war aspects, maybe more than you thought. There is a lot of brutal imagery throughout the film and if you have a light stomach than you might be joining Norman for a puke or two. Fury provides a fresh point of view than other war films as the viewers are limited to seeing and hearing only what the tank crew can see and hear. From the confines of the tank to what is forthcoming in the battlefield, you will experience it all.
A war film is only as good as its action sequences and that is one part that Fury does not disappoint. Ayer might have not delivered in the script like we are accustomed to but he is still the man when it comes to assessing men under fire. Is this film the best war film? No. But will you enjoy yourself? Yes.
Labels: 2014, Brad Pitt, david ayer, DVD, fury, Jon Bernthal, Logan Lerman, Michael Peña, Movie Review, Shia LaBeouf