"Lone Survivor," Peter Berg's new movie about a Navy SEAL mission gone horribly awry in the mountains of Afghanistan, gives away its ending in the title. But spoilers are beside the point for the gritty drama based on Marcus Luttrell's 2007 memoir, critics say, as Berg is more concerned with the bonds of brotherhood and the horrors of war. According to these reviews, the film succeeds in bringing the mission to life, although it avoids probing the deeper issues at hand.
The Times' Betsy Sharkey writes, "Berg has finally found the right war to fight and the right cast to fight it. … Whether it will be your kind of war depends." With its "gruesome energy" and "remarkable reality," Sharkey says, "this movie is not for the faint of heart."
Michael Phillips of the
At its best, Phillips adds, the film "accomplishes its mission, which is to respect these men, dramatize what they went through and let the more troubling matters of moral consequence trickle in where, and how, they may."
Burr concludes, "Berg gives us courage under fire and a moving, bullet-chipped plaque of a drama. It's very good as far as it goes. But it doesn't go far enough anymore."
Nor is Burr alone in that sentiment. Michael O'Sullivan of the