“American Sniper” lives up to the hype
BY ELIZABETH CASELLA
The film “American Sniper,” based off the true story of Navy Seal Sniper Chris Kyle, was released in selected teathers Dec. 25 and nationwide on Jan. 16. The movie follows the life of Kyle, portrayed by Bradley Cooper, whose pinpoint accuracy saves a countless number of lives on the battlefield, making him well-known as an American legend after serving four tours of duty.
Kyle is the number one lethal sniper in American history. He killed over 125 enemy soldiers during his four tours and is well deserving of his title as “The Legend,” which is more than any other American sniper.
In the commonly seen commercial sequence and opening scene of the trailer, Chris Kyle must make the call to shoot a young boy and his mother who are threatening his fellow soldiers with a grenade. The movie opens with this scene, but quickly switches to the story of Chris’ childhood and life before he became a navy seal.
The film continues on to tell why Kyle initially signed up for duty and then gives moviegoers a personal account of his days in training.
His patriotism is his drive to never give up. Kyle becomes a sniper due to his immense talent for shooting, nurtured by his father who taught him as a young child how to hunt. Kyle seemed to start off as a terrible shot due to the fact that he could not hit a still target to save his life, but he quickly proves his talent to his commanding officers by shooting live, moving animals, which he never misses.
After each tour, Kyle comes home to his wife and kids. He finds troubles of the war are hard to move past while at home. He feels that his job is not complete with each friend of his whom dies. He continues to return to the battlefield because he realizes that it is the war he cannot leave behind. He must complete his own personal mission to kill the number one sniper for the Iranians who has wounded and killed most of his friends, even with a price of $180,000 bounty for his head.
Kyle’s wife, Taya, portrayed by Sienna Miller, acts as his rock throughout the film. She pushes him to come home and helps him to recover from his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Fellow soldiers and friends of Kyle helped motivate him throughout combat, especially his friends: Biggles, Tony and Dauber.
The film covers the span of Kyle’s life after he comes home and finally learns to readjust to civilian life until the day he is killed by a fellow veteran he is trying to help recover. The film was released in selected theatres across the country on Christmas to be able to be nominated for the Oscars. The film was nominated for seven Oscars including Best Motion picture and best leading actor and made over $321 million dollars worldwide since its release as of Feb. 4.
Bradley Cooper’s performance as Kyle was spot on. The actor not only looked extremely similar to the real Kyle but had a real chemistry with all the other actors on set. He really brought the part to life and all of the ups and downs that come with being a soldier.
Overall, “American Sniper” was a gripping film that will entertain a variety of audiences including any viewers who enjoy war movies or movie based off of true stories, as it had an emotionally involved plot and was laid out well.
The story was a gripping tale and was portrayed that way on scene. At times, the film feels longer than it actually is and drags on in a few spots. Additionally, some scenes are hard to understand because it is difficult to hear the lines being spoken. This film is very intense and would not recommend it to anyone who can not handle seeing gruesome and gory scenes. The movie is well organized in its timeline throughout and is worth the ticket price for viewers who enjoy true stories about American heroes.