The Hurt Locker Reviews
An intense, action-driven war pic, a muscular, efficient standout that simultaneously conveys the feeling of combat from within as well as what it looks like on the ground.
The Hurt Locker is about Iraq in the same way that Paths of Glory was about World War I or Full Metal Jacket was about Vietnam -- which is to say, utterly and not at all. The Hurt Locker is a great movie, period.
Instead of setting out to prove a point, it seeks to immerse us in an environment -- something Bigelow does with a conceptual rigor usually associated with those directors whose work is confined to film societies and art houses.
A first-rate action thriller, a vivid evocation of urban warfare in Iraq, a penetrating study of heroism and a showcase for austere technique, terse writing and a trio of brilliant performances.
The Hurt Locker might be the first Iraq-set film to break through to a mass audience because it doesn't lead with the paralysis of the guilt-ridden Yank. The horror is there, but under the rush.
The Hurt Locker is a small classic of tension, bravery, and fear, which will be studied twenty years from now when people want to understand something of what happened to American soldiers in Iraq.
[Kathryn] Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal...have made the first fictional feature about American soldiers in Iraq that doesn't fall apart, or preach to a choir, or turn into a position paper.