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Hart's War
Movie Stats & Links

Starring: Bruce Willis, Colin Farrell, Terrence Howard, Marcel Iures
MPAA Rated: R
Released By: MGM
Kiddie Movie: Leave them at home.
Date Movie: She'll probably get weepy and hold you.
Gratuitous Sex: None.
Gratuitous Violence: Some brutal scenes.
Action: Not really action.
Laughs: Don't count on any.
Memorable Scene: Nothing stands out.
Memorable Quote: Scott asks Hart: "Can I fire you?"
Directed By: Gregory Hoblit
Produced By: Gregory Hoblit, Arnold Rifkin

Hart's War
A Movie Review

MPAA Rated - R

It's 2:08 Long

A Review by
The Dude on the Right
I hate to put my take on "Hartís War" this way, but I think it would have been a much better movie if they didnít play the racism thing. I suppose Iíll start with the basic story.

Lt. Hart (Colin Farrell) is one of those dudes with a cushy job in the war mostly because his dad is a Senator. Never seeing bullets fly, people die, or really have anything unpleasant happen to him, well, Hart is thrust into what might as well been hell for him when, driving down a country road, he is shot at and taken prisoner by the Germans (oh yea, itís 1944, near the end of WWII). After frostbite, interrogation, and seeing Holocaust victims being carted away in freight cars, Hart ends up in a POW camp where Col. McNamara (Bruce Willis) is doing a decent job at keeping the POWís in line, and Col. Visser (Marcel Iures) is no Col. Klink.

Feeling dissed by McNamara, Hart is relegated to an enlisted barracks instead of being able to shack up in the officerís beds. But thatís the least of his problems because now, as the ranking officer, he also has to keep a barracks full of racist dudes from taking out their frustrations on two, black airman (theyíre also officer, but stuck in this barracks by McNamara). Things donít go so well as one of the black men is framed (duh?), and the other, Lt. Scott (Terrence Howard) gets set up for the murder of one of the other POWs.

Visser is ready to execute Scott, but McNamara convinces Visser that Scott should be tried under military court-martial rules, and Visser agrees mostly because he seems curious as to how this whole thing will play out. But McNamara has a hidden agenda Ė to finish the tunnel out of the POW camp so a group of fellow officers can blow up the ammunition plant disguised as a shoe factory.

How does Hart figure into this? How does Scott figure into this? How can Visser let this happen right under his nose? Can McNamara pull this off? Well, I wonít ruin this part for you because for the most part, "Hartís War" is a really good movie. ButÖ

Like I said before, I had a problem with the racism thing. Sure, it was a little necessary to set up the murder, but at one point the movie started to do the preachy thing. Okay, some people still donít get it that black people were, and still are, discriminated against, but I get it, I understand it, but I donít like when it seems like they try to shove this message down my throat ("Men of Honor" did a much better job at juggling the racism story with the determination story). The other problem I really had was with the ending. Yes, it was sentimental; yes, it was poignant; and yes, it was a nice wrap-up, but it was pretty much convoluted and stupid and it pretty much ruined what could have been a great ending. The simplest way I can tell you what I thought would have been a better ending, without giving too much away, is to say that, well, Hart should have been let to tell Scottís family about honor, courage, and bravery.

For the most part "Hartís War" is great at showing the challenges of being in a POW camp, showing how men, just 55 years ago, still couldnít accept a black person in the armed forces, and how some people, thrust into impossible situations, can accomplish impossible things. It didnít need to preach, and it should have let the realistic ending take place Ė it was war. Itís 3 Ĺ stars out of 5 for "Hartís War." Catch the full price show if you donít want to see Britney in her underwear, itís a great matinee, but there are a lot of better movies out right now that if you didnít see yet, well, your money might be better spent.

Thatís it for this one! Iím The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!

 

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