“The 15:17 to Paris” Review

“But did you know those actors were the real people from the true events?” Yes, I’ve heard it everywhere. From the TV interviews to the word-of-mouth buzz, to even the usually blank comment cards at the press screening. It’s an admirable gimmick from Clint Eastwood and a surefire way to garner easy praises of patriotism for a film that holds real heroes up on the screen. It may even be an ironclad way to avoid criticism, making a case that those who don’t like the film don’t like the heroes. The truth is I do like the real-life trio brought together for this film that stopped a terrorist on a train. I like them so much I didn’t want to see them flounder on screen with a film that has little to say about them past being average men that did average things in a surprisingly average movie adaptation.
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“12 Strong” Review

You can usually tell when a film about Americans doesn’t feel as though it’s directed by one. If you watched Hacksaw Ridge, you could see that Mel Gibson gave the story of Desmond Doss a real perspective and a purpose. Despite the abundance of bloody war scenes, it wasn’t just about the war, but a philosophy on saving lives in a time of violence and how one person can do so much. This is not the case of 12 Strong, a film that seems more concerned with staging cool shots of soldiers on horses than taking in the more personal aspects of such an operation.
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