12 Strong tells the story of the first Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11; under the leadership of a new captain, the team must work with an Afghan warlord to take down the Taliban.
After a failed assassination attempt, a United States Marine finds himself stranded in the desert. Exposed to the elements, he must survive the dangers of the desert and battle the psychological and physical tolls of the treacherous conditions.
Thirty years after they served together in Vietnam, a former Navy Corpsman Larry "Doc" Shepherd re-unites with his old buddies, former Marines Sal Nealon and Reverend Richard Mueller, to bury his son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War.
During the Iraq War, U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Shane Matthews is a sniper who is sent to investigate a pipeline construction site in the desert of the country, with his spotter, Sergeant Allen Isaac. The pair patiently wait 22 hours on over-watch before determining that the site is clear. Matthews proceeds to investigate the site, but is shot by an Iraqi sniper. Isaac tries to rescue the dying Matthews, but he is also wounded in the right knee and has his radio damaged and his water bottle destroyed in the process..
Nicholas Irving, former US RANGER Sniper and author of The Reaper is a technical advisor on this project. Irving was nicknamed "the reaper" during his tours of duty in Afghanistan See more »
When Isaac crawls back behind the wall after collecting the radio from the dead marine, the wall with the door opening is completely demolished by the sniper. A moment later the door opening is mysteriously back again. See more »
[sighting through his scope from a bush]
Nothin'. Hit n' run. Whoever it was they're gone. War's over, he got the memo.
[on his radio]
We got no movement, not a sign of a shadow... How long we been here, man? 18, plus?
Jesus. There's nobody fuckin' out there, man.
[...] See more »
A Bare Bones Thriller That Works More Than It Doesn't
The Wall is the latest thriller from director Doug Liman and features Aaron Taylor-Johnson and John Cena as a two man recon team stationed in Iraq who are pinned down by sniper fire and must take refuge behind a wall. Their calls for help are heard by no one...except the enemy sniper. As the battle of wits rages on so does the courage of the two men and their will to survive. This proves to be very beneficial for this film because, honestly, it did not feel like it would be able to sustain a feature length film. However, with the sheer intensity of the film and the perfect performances from Johnson and Cena, The Wall works even when it doesn't.
First off, the film is a lean, mean 80 minutes. As soon as the film starts, it starts. There is no warming up to it, it drops you in the movie unapologetic. What comes next is a reckoning of pure adrenaline pumping cinema. Much like last year's The Shallows, The Wall benefits from its bare bones approach. There isn't big explosions or typical warfare, this is more a war of wits which has been done before (and better) but this film is successful in the way that it doesn't need huge action numbers to sustain suspense. Director Doug Liman knows what it is and he knows the strengths are in the performances. It makes for a very interesting addition in the new age war film genre, sitting nicely between The Hurt Locker and American Sniper.
Despite all that is well with the film, there are a few moments where you're expecting the film to go one way and then it absolutely does not take any risks and gives you exactly what you expected. For that, I have to say that it was disappointing to not see as much innovation with such a bare bones film. For me, I like when characters are forced to use their environments for their benefit. The Wall definitely did that but in sort of a half-assed way. There really isn't anything clever or cool about the way it all pans out. With that being said, it still makes for an intense movie even if sometimes it feels a little cheap.
Overall, The Wall is a short yet intense film that will keep you hanging on until the last frame. The performances from Aaron Taylor Johnson and John Cena are nothing short of amazing. This is especially for John Cena, who absolutely blew me away with his fantastic performance as Matthews. While Cena shines, so does Aaron Taylor Johnson who bucks up and carries the movie on his shoulders without even thinking about it. It stands as Johnson and Cena's best performances to date and it definitely is worth watching.
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