Thoughts on American Sniper?

I just saw American Sniper and i got to say Bradley Cooper nailed it as Chris Kyle if you know anything about chris kyle you could see him on screen. As far as the movie goes it was mediocre. Also if you want the real story on the guy please read his book that is the only way you could truly understand him he is a really complex, smart and interesting guy who the media seems to portray him as a psycho even Aron and Jim are buying into it without actually reading into the guys story.

They intentionlly misquote his book the Guardian wrote a piece saying "Kyle reportedly described killing as “fun”, something he “loved”; he was unwavering in his belief that everyone he shot was a “bad guy”. “I hate the damn savages,” he wrote. “I couldn’t give a flying fuck about the Iraqis.” He bragged about murdering looters during Hurricane Katrina, though that was never substantiated."

He was murdered in 2013 at a Texas gun range by a 25-year-old veteran reportedly suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

Meanwhile the actual context of what he said was "Savage, despicable evil. That's what we were fighting in Iraq. That's why a lot of people, myself included, called the enemy 'savages.' There really was no other way to describe what we encountered there."

The only factual quote I can have with context to War and Fun

“Just because war is hell doesn’t mean you can’t have a little fun.”

An important contextual perspective of Kyle's...

“Another question people ask a lot: Did it bother you killing so many people in Iraq? I tell them, “No.” And I mean it. The first time you shoot someone, you get a little nervous. You think, can I really shoot this guy? Is it really okay? But after you kill your enemy, you see it’s okay. You say, Great. You do it again. And again. You do it so the enemy won’t kill you or your countrymen. You do it until there’s no one left for you to kill. That’s what war is.”

Or the following...

"I don't have to psych myself up, or do something special mentally - I look through the scope, get my target in the cross hairs, and kill my enemy, before he kills one of my people."

The Jesse Ventura Lawsuit was won because it was about defamation meanwhile the 11 witnesses all said he punched Ventura but the argument wasn't about if he did or did not punch him it was about whether what Chris said in the Media resulted in Ventura getting slandered and defamed.

As far as the Katrina shooting the only stuff i was able to find was some people saying they saw some PMCs working in that area but again those are just people saying it so Its not official.

The last Incident was about the two carjackers on that one the cops of the local town are denying it. the only thing i could say is that Chris Kyle in Texas is idolized he could do no wrong in their eyes. The only possibility i see is the police letting him go because they idolized him and then later denying it.

http://sofrep.com/39292/lindy-west-bashes-chris-kyle/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sofrep+%28SOFREP%29

Comments

  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    I saw the movie over Christmas weekend here in Dallas. While quite emotional and despite a great performance by Bradley Cooper, I couldn't get past the differences from the book on which it's based. The movie as a whole was very "Hollywood" and changed more things than were really needed.
  • That was my problem with it i knew it wasn't going to be as good as the book when they showed in the trailer the kid holding the grenade instead of what actually happen which was a woman who did it. It truly sucks that they ruined the movie because reading the book you realize the potential of it being a amazing movie and that if done right this could have been one of the best films ever made right up there with Apocalypse Now and Platoon. I know Steven Spielberg was going to direct it in the beginning but dropped out due to budget restrictions I wonder how different it would have been if he had done it.

    Lone Survivor was another film that was ruined by hollywood the book is mind blowing and has something strong to say about the war but they also blew it. I always imagine about what if a great director would have done with the material like Francis Ford Coppola, Stanley Kubrick or Oliver Stone.
  • Bradley Cooper did a great job, its a good movie but not a great movie. Im not quite sure what its lacking but It needed more emotion or something. The only part that touched my heart was the real footage before the credits rolled. Chris Kyle thank you for protecting our country
  • FlashGordonFlashGordon Leeds, UK
    edited January 2015
    I like the genre and any film that try to tackle modern warfare sensibly and credibly, from hurt locker to zero dark thirty , also my bro & step bro were both marines deployed in these conflicts so i like to see the topic addressed with a good attempt at realism , although I think HBO's 'generation kill' have done it best so far http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0995832/

    This was a long way away from perfect though, the 'hollywooding' detracted from it a bit, and it felt a little one dimensional at times like Sienna Millers only real line was 'when you're here, you're not here, it never got too absurd though.

    Well worth a watch and Bradley Cooper did a good job with Chris Kyle; who deserved a good portrayal from what i've read, BC did well getting into, not just the bulking up, but using the guns, accent, meeting his firends/family etc so I overall i liked it.
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    Pretty blah for me. The story could have been so much better and nagging wife angle just was annoying. Very Hollywood. Disappointed.
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    I was pretty uncomfortable watching it. I was constantly asking myself, in 2015, knowing what we know now this is the kind of movie we can still make about this conflict?? Yikes. I would suggest HBO's "Generation Kill", "The Hurt Locker" even something like the "Four Lions" over this.
  • @aberry89 just curious what did you find uncomfortable about it? The movie was tackling PTSD and the effect it has on soldiers that are currently coming home.
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    That was the movie I wanted to see, a soldier carrying the weight of what he did home with him and trying to live a normal life again. We got maybe a total of 20 minutes of that. And see my comment above for what made me feel uncomfortable. This conflict is complicated and gray and messy, and affects a lot of diffrent people directly, most of which are not Americans. In war movies, I really prefer to see both sides, it's just far more interesting and reminds us why we go to war in the first place. But this was a biopic, about a real person, so I think they felt it would do his memory injustice to flesh out anyone on the other side. It felt like a movie that would come out in 2004 - a more idealistically simple time, when we thought we would be home soon and be leaving a country liberated and free.
  • @aberry89 I think they covered what they could in the 2 hour movie frame while also covering another 20 minutes about the marriage. From what i remember the Hurt Locker didn't tackle the subject the only scene that shows him at home is the last 5 min. I could see why you would recommend Four Lions but that movie was following guys who weren't even affected by the conflict. The movie did display some moments of how gray and messy the war was by directly showing a kid and a mother getting killed! by a US soldier and when the kid picked up the rpg and it had 2 clear scenes were they were questioning the war the first when his brother told him on the aircraft strip "fuck this place" and the other when Marc Lee told him "why are we even here, what's the point". I agree with you that the movie could have shown the affects of the innocent civilians that are caught in the war but he was a Sniper not a Drone Pilot killing entire familys.

    If you really "wanted to see, a soldier carrying the weight of what he did home with him and trying to live a normal life again" Read his book 60% of it is about that alone the other 20% is about his childhood and the rest about the war.
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    From what I hear the book was better. Just not my type of movie I guess.
  • @aberry89‌ I don't understand your point about "what we know now" in 2015 and how apparently what you saw seemed more appropriate in a movie ten years ago. Any further information we have about the Iraq war now has no impact whatsoever on the troops' daily situation there, you're applying a judgment that belongs focused on politicians and the Pentagon to the troops on the ground, which makes no sense. I think the movie had the fictional Iraqi sniper plot line to address this, to keep the attention focused on Kyle and away from the politics of what we were doing there, because as you said this is a biopic not really a war movie.
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    I think I prefer something like "Generation Kill" because we got lots of different perspectives from lots of different soldiers. They all have varying mindsets and feelings toward what they are doing. You're telling a story at the end of the day, and I find stories like that more meaningful. When it comes to war movies I lean toward very realistic or documentary. And this felt like an action movie to me, and that's the part that made it feel out of touch. I don't hate this movie, or think it's an awful depiction of the war. It just wasn't quite as nuanced as it could have been, could have used some better writing in my opinion. Just a gut feeling, can't explain any more than that.
  • @aberry89‌ Yeah I don't disagree with that at all, I just wasn't expecting anything like that, I feel like I was going into this, or at least coming out of it, from a different angle. This is absolutely more of an action movie than a war movie, in fact to me what it really seemed like was a western set in the Iraq war (maybe this is just my mental bias of knowing it's a Clint Eastwood movie). It certainly bears similarities at least (down to the shootout at the end), and everything that wasn't telling his story was strictly B plot. I never expected or wanted any sort of analysis or commentary on the war, as you get in Generation Kill and The Hurt Locker, because both of those were created almost explicitly for that purpose (either commentary or accurate depiction).

    I think this was a good movie and Bradley Cooper was excellent, I think he absolutely deserves his nomination for his role in it, but I don't think the movie itself warranted a best picture nomination. On the other hand I can't stand what seem to me to be movies created purely for Oscar pandering, such as Foxcatcher, The King's Speech, Lincoln, The Butler, War Horse (ugh, really?), etc. Those movies seem to have been created just to brown nose the Oscar board, I can't stand it. American Sniper stands in sharp contrast to that which I really appreciate, but I think it was too one dimensional to warrant a best picture nomination.
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    A western set in Iraq - yep. Perfect. Those two narratives don't gel for me, that's probably why I didn't like it.

    Cooper was amazing, he's an excellent actor, but I agree, the movie was not the best of the year. There are some truly amazing movies that got nominated though, I think "Birdman" was my favorite this year, god that movie stuck with me... - not sure if that will win though ;)
  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    ghm3 said:

    ... I can't stand what seem to me to be movies created purely for Oscar pandering, such as Foxcatcher, The King's Speech, Lincoln, The Butler, War Horse (ugh, really?), etc. Those movies seem to have been created just to brown nose the Oscar board, I can't stand it. American Sniper stands in sharp contrast to that which I really appreciate, but I think it was too one dimensional to warrant a best picture nomination.

    I get annoyed at those "Oscar-worthy" flicks too. They're usually handled by studios like TWC that know EXACTLY when to release and who's ass to kiss to get the nominations to flow in their direction. I would have prefered to see something dark/different like Nightcrawler receive some Oscar attention personally, but that's just my taste. Either way I've seen 70% of the flicks nominated and will see the rest by Oscar night.
  • I was listening to the Empire magazine podcast last week and they hit on this really well, like for some of the hosts Guardians of the Galaxy was their favourite film, but it would never even be considered. As you guys say it has to be an 'oscar-best picture' type of film, I think Foxcatcher, The Theory of Everything & Imitation game- while the latter two are both really good films, they're marketed & released specifically for the best picture category.

    That's why I like Grand Budapest so much, very different and defies the category.

    American Sniper is not the best picture of the year by a long shot, but fuck me if this was on revenue alone,I can't believe how much Money that movie is making!
  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    @FlashGordon‌ "Marketing, Marketing, Marketing"
    They've done a great job selling it. That teaser trailer with just the decision to shoot or not shoot was really done.

    I feel I need to watch it again with little to no book knowledge in my head, because that scene alone took me out of it.

    In the book that scene was described, however it was simply a female with a grenade. They felt the need to Hollywood/dial it up by making it a child.

    I feel that if it's a real-life story of a deceased person who has committed the actions to a book, is it too much to ask to show it as it occurred in real life?

    For anyone interested in an in-dept interview with Chris Kyle himself, this podcast from O&A was just re-released

    opieandanthonypodcast.libsyn.com/
  • So American Sniper just pulled in another $64.4 million in its second weekend, absolutely amazing. That would've been a great first week never mind second, and is as much as the next seven movies made combined.

    I wouldn't be surprised if this release represents a shift in movie releases that has already been happening, but cements it. For years now January/February has been the dumping ground of crap movies studios just want to slip by unnoticed while November/December has been the big releases hoping for Oscar nominations. For a while now though many of these late-year releases have only been 'technically' released in December, opening in like three to a few dozen screens but don't actually go wide until January, e.g. American Sniper. This movie proves that summer blockbuster profits are possible in a January release, so I wouldn't be surprised to see even more of those late-year Oscar bait movies to slide into January after a very limited December opening as they jockey for an opening date with less competition.

    On the other hand, The Lego Movie opened in February I think, and was completely snubbed, is the Oscar board really that pathetically short-minded? It seems to support the long-standing idea of releasing Oscar bait as late as possible.
    ksa1001 said:

    ghm3 said:

    ... I can't stand what seem to me to be movies created purely for Oscar pandering, such as Foxcatcher, The King's Speech, Lincoln, The Butler, War Horse (ugh, really?), etc. Those movies seem to have been created just to brown nose the Oscar board, I can't stand it. American Sniper stands in sharp contrast to that which I really appreciate, but I think it was too one dimensional to warrant a best picture nomination.

    I get annoyed at those "Oscar-worthy" flicks too. They're usually handled by studios like TWC that know EXACTLY when to release and who's ass to kiss to get the nominations to flow in their direction. I would have prefered to see something dark/different like Nightcrawler receive some Oscar attention personally, but that's just my taste. Either way I've seen 70% of the flicks nominated and will see the rest by Oscar night.

    I agree, I don't like how Nightcrawler was snubbed, I liked it very much and Jake Gyllenhaal was great in it. Both deserved nominations at least as much as others that were nominated.

  • FlashGordonFlashGordon Leeds, UK
    edited January 2015
    Ok so it's getting silly now, it's taken over $200M now, practically no-one saw generation kill, which was probably the most accurate depiction of Iraq i've seen.


    @ghm3 thought you'd want to see this as it echoes some of your takeaway from it, http://www.theguardian.com/film/2015/jan/29/american-sniper-old-fashioned-western?CMP=fb_gu
  • @FlashGordon Yeah thanks that's interesting, it does certainly parallel my thoughts of it a good deal. It also displays a clear contempt for it and bitterness/ jealousy for its success, which is quite petty and pathetic.
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