American Sniper – Review


American Sniper is a film about the compelling life of Chris Kyle who is regarded as America’s greatest sniper, but is a mediocre film because it has a one-dimensional take on the character’s life, and has a rather simplistic, narrow-minded and very bias view on the war in Iraq because it is portrayed as a “Savages vs American patriots” type situation.

The film is filled with never ending action, energy, American pride and unwavering American patriotism that will make you burst out of your chair and start singing the American anthem with your hand over your heart.

Sadly the script was simplistic and formulaic in its approach that never really explored the themes and motifs that were introduced in the beginning of the film. The script portrays the war as a black or white issue (when it’s a grey issue), and praises Chris as a war hero but never really goes into the aspect of what post-traumatic stress syndrome can do to an individual and how it can affect them. The film definitely showed him as a wounded man, both physically and psychologically, but it fails in exploring the emotions that he had to go through. Due to this, the film felt very formulaic and you never learn anything about the other characters, making Chris Kyle the ONLY interesting character in the film.

However one of the better things about American Sniper is the cinematography and the action. The cinematography was well produced with a bleak and grey filter that highlights the nuances of war, the consequences of war, and the psychology of war while it mirrors the personality of Chris Kyle. Speaking of Chris Kyle, Bradley Cooper did a solid job with the role and delivered what was necessary on the script. The action was well handled with a lot of suspense and heart-pounding moments throughout the film. There was a bit of shaky camera (personal pet peeve because I get headaches from them) but I thought it added to the realism of the film.

Overall, the film was simplistic with a few great action scenes that was performed well by Bradley Cooper.

Lin Yang