Back to The Best Movies for Veteran's Day
'The Hurt Locker'
The moral of this Best Picture Oscar-winning Iraq War tale, stated up front, is that war is a drug. Bomb defuser Jeremy Renner (in his star-making role) seems to be addicted to the rush of danger, to the great alarm of his comrades. By contrast, back home, he feels alienated by the overabundance and banality of middle-class American life, so much so that he'd rather return to duty in the hellish anarchy of searing heat, choking dust, and death around every corner. At least that makes sense to him. The brilliance of Kathryn Bigelow's Oscar-winning direction is that it makes viewers complicit adrenaline junkies as well, breathlessly awaiting the next explosion and feeling the dehumanizing toll of modern warfare.