Review: Flags Of Our Fathers

Adam Beach, Ryan Phillippe and Jesse Bradford in Flags Of Our Fathers

The first of a few brief film reviews I plan to end the year on, given the fact that I’ve seen a few movies during my three months back in the states (God bless Netflix!). First up, Flags of Our Fathers, I film that I went to see with Tung and Fabricio one night after work a few weeks ago…

This Second World War epic is the latest piece of work to come from critically acclaimed director Clint Eastwood, and centers itself around three men and the controversy that surrounded the famous photo ‘Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima’. This film has a large American historical context, so perhaps a lot of this film’s relevance may have been lost on me.

However, regardless of the story it was trying to tell, the fact is that there seemed to be very little - two flags were raised, and many of the men who were responsible for getting both of them atop Mount Suribachi were killed in action, and weren’t able to see the response and publicity that this single image generated back in the US.

Eastwood tries to get around this problem, by endlessly playing with the timeline, going back and forth, from the field of action (which to be fair contained cinematography equally comparable to that of Saving Private Ryan), to the three surviving soldiers enrolled by the Government to travel around the US on the back of this photo, to promote war bonds, whilst at the same time fighting each other and their own demons.

Whilst the film contained a number of fine performances (especially from Adam Beach who played conflicted soldier Ira Hayes) there seemed to be very little plot - which I very much doubt was actually the case. The overly complicated yet essentially simple story-line, made film flabby, tiresome and easily forgettable as a result.


5 responses so far. Go on, add yours!

 Gravatar#1 On December 12, 2006 1:16 AM, trovster said...

I'll probably head to see this when it hits British shores. Clint Eastwood has actually filmed or is filming the Japanese perspective of this story. Could be interesting. If you want a good Eastwood film, then watch Million Dollar Baby.

 Gravatar#2 On December 12, 2006 1:22 AM, Paul Lloyd said...

Yeah I heard about that. It's called “Letters from Iwo Jima" - and I think a first for a war movie to be have it told from both sides of the fence as it were - what a novel but fantastic idea!

As to Million Dollar Baby, it's sitting beside my TV right now awaiting a play. Of course I would have already seen it if I wasn't instead subjected to "Harold and Kumar Get The Munchies" - thanks Kris!

 Gravatar#3 On December 12, 2006 7:55 AM, kris said...

Yeah but wasn't it beautiful when they finally made it to the burger bar and satisfied their hunger?????

 Gravatar#4 On December 13, 2006 12:28 AM, Paul Lloyd said...

No Idea Kris, as you will no doubt remember, I walked out of the cinema in disgust. I should have asked for my money back...

 Gravatar#5 On December 15, 2006 8:36 AM, Jon said...

why? I wish they'd make a second. I'd be there like a shot!

(btw, why wont your gay comments form remember my details?)

Film Details

Directed by:
Clint Eastwood
Adam Beach, Ryan Phillippe, Jesse Bradford, Jamie Bell
DreamWorks SKG, Warner Bros. Pictures, Amblin Entertainment

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This entry was written on 11 Dec 2006, 11:50 PM and is filled under , .