Saturday, October 25, 2014
At more than 20,000 days my life is much too long to say for sure this is the best movie I have ever seen, but it is the best movie I can remember ever seeing. I walked out of the movie slowly after watching the credits.
I never stay for the credits.
But the credits of Fury show actual footage from World War 2 I remember from documentaries.
The story begins in the flaming, smoking wreckage of a tank battle with a lone German on a horse riding into the scene. The somber calm is broken when Brad Pitt jumps from his tank and kills the German with a knife. Pitt and his crew are the only survivors of the battle. They get the disabled tank running and return to the war.
From this scene onward, the movie gets perfectly right the claustrophobic, noisy dangerous world inside a tank. Even without a war, every tank turret is divided in half by a main gun. When the main gun is fired, the gun recoils almost to the back of the turret. Hands, legs, gear, bodies or anything else behind the main gun gets crushed. This movie gets that danger right. The crew calls the metal enclosure home, but home is a place that can turn into a fuel and ammo fueled inferno.
In the middle of the movie, four American Sherman tanks are attacked by one German Tiger tank. The American tanks are outgunned by the more heavily armored German tank and three of the four Sherman tanks are smoking wrecks by the time the brief, violent battle ends. The way the fight went brought back my best memories of tank gunnery and how well a crew that agrees on little or nothing outside the tank can mesh to put fire on targets.
Like "Saving Private Ryan" the premise of the last scene is ridiculous. But unlike Ryan, which had me laughing and calling "bullshit" I stayed with the movie because even if the scene was unbelievable tactically, as bad as the worst John Wayne movie, the final scene made clear how attached crews can become to their tank and to each other.
The battle between the Tiger and the Shermans is worth the price of admission by itself. Brad Pitt's character drew me in past every filter I have for war movies.
I am going to see Fury again in the theater. Maybe twice.
Other posts on Fury:
Fourth time watching Fury
Faith in Fury