Browse all reviews by letter     A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0 - 9

France/USA/Spain/United Kingdom 2010
Directed by
Paul Greengrass
115 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3.5 stars

Green Zone

Synopsis: U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer Roy Miller (Matt Damon) leads a team hunting Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq. When he keeps turning up empty-handed he begins to question the reliability of the Intel and finds himself battling his own people as well as the Iraqis.

The reason Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker has impressed is that it unequivocally brings home the reality of  war in Iraq. Following hard on its heels, Green Zone deals with the same war but, particularly in its climactic latter stage, it is closer to the XBox of the representational spectrum (as Damon’s Miller says to one of his men as they prepare for battle: “Put your game face on”... or was that in the trailer for another movie?).  In essence, despite its specific political agenda there’s not a great deal of difference between Avatar’s Jake Sully and Green Zone’s Roy Miller.  Both are action heroes on a mission to take down the bad guys and there’s no surprises about the wash up..

Which is not to say that Green Zone is not an entertaining movie.  Paul Greengrass and Matt Damon have honed their respective skills on the Bourne movies and writer Brian Helgeland  is one on the hottest Hollywood writers around with Man On Fire (2004), Mystic River (2003) and L.A. Confidential (1997) amongst others on his C.V. In terms of reproducing Baghdad as a war zone the movie is relentlessly impressive. In terms of pacing it crackles with energy with an amped up soundtrack, kinetic editing and scene after scene that only pauses briefly to keep the audience, quite unsubtly, aware of the film’s message - that the Bush-Cheney Administration contrived the WMD scare to justify their personal priorities. Which were? I wish Greengrass and Helgeland had been a little more informative in this respect. But I guess that’s another movie.  In terms of bangs for your buck, Green Zone will satisfy whilst the left-leaning politico-moral gloss will soften the suspicion that you have just spent the best part of 2 hours watching a souped-up video game.  




Want more about this film?

search youtube  search wikipedia  

Want something different?

random vintage best worst