Fighting with fury

Brad Pitt’s latest movie is released

By Caitlin LeRoux
Staff Writer

dT8Kek6TeRated: R
Duration: 135 Minutes
Rating: 7 stars out of 10

“Fury,” released Oct.18, was written and directed by David Ayers and stars Brad Pitt and Logan Lerman. This film is a grisly and grimy depiction of the last days of World War II in April 1945, as seen through the eyes of a beleaguered five man U.S. Sherman tank crew on their way to Berlin.

These “tankers,” as they were referred to, are commanded by veteran actor Brad Pitt known as Don Collier or “Wardaddy” and have been together since their raids in North Africa, with the exception of newcomer replacement tank driver, Norman Ellison, solidly portrayed by Logan Lerman. Norman was a typist clerk who has been in the war for a short amount of time.

Image from Google.

Image from Google.

“Wardaddy” vows to ensure that those under his command survive, but senses a potential problem with the placid Norman who has never experienced combat let alone killed anyone.

“Wardaddy” decides on a formula to toughen up Norman. Norman’s first duty comes when he is forced into the cleaning of the inside of the tank where he makes a gruesome discovery, causing him to vomit profusely.

However, one of the most brutal scenes of the film is when “Wardaddy” forces Norman to murder the enemy against his will, by stating “kill or be killed.”

“Wardaddy” is plagued by other questionable behavior from his crew as well in the form of a crazed mechanic called “Coon-Ass” played alarmingly well by Jon Bernthal and a fanatical Bible-quoting tanker played by Shia LaBeouf. Despite this misfit but closely-nit crew, “Wardaddy” and his tankers trudge through the German countryside in their Sherman tank built by the Ford Motor Company encountering numerous bloody battles and flying body parts on their mission including German men, women and children hanging from poles along the road because they would not fight with the Nazis.

War never looked grim, dirty, grey and smoky than the combat depicted here, nor do the soldiers engage in saintly acts, but seem sometimes to revel in the killing with the entire crew saying it was the “best job I ever had.”

This is where the movie excels. It is in its portrayal of war as a type of earthly Hell. The horrible details are not sugar coated for the timid.

Where the movie doesn’t live up to other great war movie standards is the plot. The tale meanders as does “Wardaddy” and his tankers do through the German landscape. There’s no real storyline, just a series of fighting with Nazis on the path to Berlin. The sub-story, however, of outsider Norman’s transformation from naïve typist to full-fledged fighting tanker redeems the film’s lack of plot to a degree, but not enough to make this a stellar contribution to the war movie genre.

Overall, stars Brad Pitt and Logan Lerman deliver worthy performances and WWII is vividly portrayed, but if WWII buffs are looking for a great movie on the topic, there are others with better plots.