Sunday, April 3, 2016

Eye in the Sky

is a rough movie to watch, an hour and forty-two minutes centered on the human cost of drone attacks.  If that sounds like a dull political tract, it's anything but; the filmmakers infuse the story with plenty of tension and uniformly interesting characters.  From start to finish, you know where the movie is going, but the journey is intriguing and terrifying.

I didn't like all the characters in this film, but all of them came across as real people with real agendas facing complex issues as best they could.  Helen Mirren and Alan Rickman, in his last film, delivered strong performances despite having relatively simple characters to portray, but every actor in the movie did a great job.

It's easy to imagine a Hollywood version of this film that ekes out a happy ending in which everything wraps up perfectly and easily, but fortunately, that's not what we get here.  Instead, we end with victories and losses, which is the best outcome any conflict can generate.  No war, no matter how it may seem from the history books or the news reports, is without huge costs, both to the losers and to the people who fight it.  Eye in the Sky shows some of those costs.

I'm not sure you'll enjoy it, though I did, but I am sure you should see it.  As we move further and further into a world in which remote warfare is commonplace, we all need to try yet again to understand the costs involved.

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