Review: Hacksaw Ridge

Put some of it back together.

Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield) enlists in the army during WWII. He wants to be a medic after falling in love with a nurse, Dorothy. (Teresa Palmer) But he doesn't want to carry a weapon. He states he's there to save life, not take it. What he ends up doing is saving over 75 people in combat in Japan, without ever firing a gun.

The trailers for this film did nothing for me. But alas, I'm an Oscar junkie and when this film kept popping up on lists, I knew I had to see it. I'm glad to say it was a lot better than I gave it credit for. (And my husband is making sure to rub it in)

Hacksaw Ridge isn't perfect. In fact, it's almost as if you're watching two separate films. The first half is the cheesiest love/underdog story you've ever seen, and the back half is like Mel Gibson watched Saving Private Ryan then did a line of coke. It's ultra-violent and intense. 

Acting wise, Garfield is good and he and Palmer have great chemistry, but it's Vince Vaughn as his Sargent who is the standout. The war scenes are something else. I can't imagine how much work went into staging all of that. From the SFX team, to the actors and the set designers. I can't help but be in awe of that. They're likely going to win a few Sound Oscars as well, or at the very least be nominated for them. This is one of those movies where the sound editing and mixing really stands out. 

Recommended: Yes

Grade: C+ (that may seem weird but God, the first half of this movie..)

Memorable Quote: "There's no shame in it, son. " - Sgt Howell (Vince Vaughn)

14 comments:

  1. Yeah, it'll be a while until I see this. The trailer is just SOOOOOO cheesy. Glad you enjoyed it, overall.

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    1. Thankfully, the 2nd half of the movie is NOTHING like the first.

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  2. "and the back half is like Mel Gibson watched Saving Private Ryan then did a line of coke."

    dude knowing Mel that line wasn't a line but shaped like shotgun huge amount of coke he snorted off the coffee table Lord of War style

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    1. That's true, then he probably yelled at someone to blow him. lol

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  3. I'll see it on TV just to give it a shot though I'm wary of it as it feels quite Oscar-baity. I still like Mel Gibson though.

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    1. It's very baity, but those battle scenes are worth seeing for sure.

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  4. I do want to see it and I think I will like it more than you but I'm glad you did like it. I bet it will be up for best picture, director(maybe) and the awards that don't get much love like sound. You never know, Vince Vaughan may be up for an Oscar since he is getting a lot of love for this role.

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    1. I think the only acting shot is Garfield, but even he's not a lock, especially with Silence coming out, he might split votes.

      I am glad I liked it more than I expected it to.

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  5. This is a very graphic showing of incredible heroism. Very well crafted and acted movie.

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  6. I gotta say I loved it, even the first part. I completely get your reaction to it. For me it was almost an idyllic throwback which them crashes against the realities of war. I found it to be a film of contrasts and it was really effective for me. Wanted to see it again in hopes of ironing out a few things but I don't think I'll get the chance before it leaves theaters.

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    1. I like how passionate you've been about this film. Looking at it as a throwback is a good way, I know I'll see it again on DVD so I'm going to try to watch with that perspective.

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  7. It looks like I'm going to end up missing this one, but I' very, very curious about it. And while the second half of the film intrigues me...your mention of Vince Vaughn has me stunned. I didn't even know he was in this, let alone doing good things in it. SOLD.

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    1. He's great, he's part of my favorite scene of the entire movie too.

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