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Pearl Harbor
Movie Stats & Links

Starring: Ben Affleck, Josh Hartnett, Kate Beckinsale, Alec Baldwin, Jon Voight, Cuba Gooding, Jr.
MPAA Rated: PG-13
Released By: Touchstone Pictures
Kiddie Movie: It's got a love story - good for the girls but boring for the boys.
Date Movie: She might like it better than you.
Gratuitous Sex: Kate almost gets naked.
Gratuitous Violence: The bombing of Pearl Harbor is very realistic.
Action: Not until the bombings.
Laughs: There's a chuckle.
Memorable Scene: Duh, the bombing of Pearl Harbor.
Memorable Quote: "This is no shit."
Directed By: Michael Bay
Produced By: Jerry Bruckheimer, Michael Bay

Pearl Harbor
A Movie Review

MPAA Rated - PG-13

It's 3:03 Long

A Review by
The Dude on the Right
Maybe the thinking came about like this: "Wow, that ‘Titanic’ movie was huge, and you know what, other than the boat sinking it was a fake story. Can you think of another historic event that we can build a fake love story around?" "I’ve got it boss, how about the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and you know what, when we do the previews for it why don’t we tone down the lovey-dovey stuff and just show it as a kick-ass war movie, you know, like that ‘Saving Private Ryan?’" "Wow, that sounds great! Get to work!" At least that’s my take on how this movie might have come about. But seriously, well maybe not seriously, "Pearl Harbor" is a chick-flick advertised like a war movie. Sure it’s got a kick-ass reenactment of the bombing of Pearl Harbor and Doolittle’s raid on Tokyo, but getting to those scenes, well, you’ve got to deal with a lovey-dovey storyline that makes this three hour movie seem like, well, three hours.

So instead of Kate and Leo, this time we get Kate and Ben with Josh tossed in for a threesome. Ben Affleck is Rafe, and Josh Hartnett is Danny. They are best friends, grew up together, dreamed of flying together, and end up as navy pilots. Kate Beckinsale is Evelyn, a naval nurse. As it turns out Rafe works his magic and gets Evelyn to like him. All is going well except that Rafe volunteers for work with the British pilots to fight the Germans. He breaks the news to Evelyn and tells Danny that if something happens to him, well, Danny should be the one to tell Evelyn. Low and behold Rafe is shot-down and assumed dead, Danny tells Evelyn, Evelyn is heartbroken, and yes, three months later, well, Danny and Evelyn hook up and all is well with the two of them. You know the saying about assuming, and yes, Rafe isn’t really dead and somehow makes it to Pearl Harbor quicker than the telegram saying he is still alive. Now Rafe is mad at Danny, Danny tries to justify his dating Evelyn to Rafe, and Evelyn doesn’t really know what to do. Sounds like a great war movie doesn’t it?

So our threesome is having their own problems trying to figure out there lives when, wouldn’t you know it, the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor. A lot of people die, Rafe and Danny are off to do some heroic flying, the bombing is over, and Rafe, Danny, and Evelyn are still trying to figure out their lives. And damn, wouldn’t you know it, Colonel Doolittle (Alec Baldwin) wants Rafe and Danny to join his secret mission. They’re off to bomb Tokyo, Evelyn tells Rafe she will always love him but she has to stay with Danny (I’m sure you can figure out why), the U.S. bombs Tokyo, and Rafe and Evelyn live happily ever after.

Sure, tossed in between our love story are some military leader scenes, the Japanese planning their attack, the U.S. military leaders and politicians not sure what to do with all of the information about Japanese aggressive movements, and a very cool version of F.D.R. played by Jon Voight.

I guess for me "Pearl Harbor" wasn’t that bad of a movie except next time lets try running trailers showing what the movie really is – a generic, fictional love story set against a real historic event. Maybe that’s why "Titanic" worked so well as apposed to "Pearl Harbor." For "Titanic" we knew there would be a lot of story build-up and lovey-dovey crap leading up to the boat sinking, but for "Pearl Harbor" all we really got was a trailer spotlighting the war story. It had the potential to be a kick-ass war movie clocking in at the normal two hours if you got rid of the hokey love story, it had the potential to be an okay romantic movie for the chicks, but putting the two together just left "Pearl Harbor" as a three hour mix of not knowing really what kind of movie it really wanted to be.

In the end I’ll give "Pearl Harbor" 3 ½ stars out of 5. It could have been a decent romantic love story, it could have been a fantastic war movie, but it couldn’t be both.

That’s it for this one! I’m The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!


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