The Big Picture: American Sniper Sucks (And It's Okay To Admit That)

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American Sniper Sucks (And It's Okay To Admit That)

Folks are imprinting importance on American Sniper.

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...aaand enter the people on here, saying that you're blinded by your opinions, or that your political slant skews your opinion on this. Not here yet? They will be.

I massively agree with what you're saying, although I have a different perspective on it. Living in the UK, the details of Chris Kyle's life never made it to the news, and so all of the details on him have to be pieced together from the internet. Most people can't be arsed to do that, and so go to the film largely ignorant of it. The people I spoke to who'd seen the film were largely unaware that it was based on a real thing, and the significance of who it's filmed on. When pressed about how they found the film, they shrug and go "It was alright I guess". I think we largely believe that it's an oscar contender because it's got a flag on the poster.

A movie about domination and submissiveness (fifty shades of gray)is forcing MovieBob to watch and work with it for months.. I find that to be irony on a entire different level!

I'm looking forward to watching this movie many, many months from now when, hopefully, all this nonsense has died down and I can actually judge it on its own terms.

Oh, and I hope the mods are ready for what I assume will be an incoming onslaught of ideologues.

I sort of figured this is the kind of direction this movie would have to take, seeing as Chris Kyle, in real life, was a pathological liar and actually posthumously lost a huge defamation lawsuit against one of my home state's former governors. The dude wasn't a good man, and while I respect his service and contribution to the US Navy seals, he doesn't deserve the amount of attention, admiration, and fame being thrown at him because of this film. Whole thing just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

Well, time to brace for blowout because this is a doozy

As for my view on this, if it's a bad movie, fine so be it. Lots of people watch bad movies, hell Transformers still makes me scratch my head in terms of popularity.

However, this whole culture war thing really did kind of spark up from rather minimal controversy. I can understand wanting a comforting narrative: guy gets girl, guy saves people, guy is patriot to nation, selfless causes and simple truths. I can also understand some people taking a stand with it and supporting it. I can't comprehend how this became a political thing. Isn't it possible to say "this movie presents a comfortable narrative about the war on terror that is detached from reality" while being able to still know and understand the more complicated issues of the war?

How on earth did we get a small demographic of people apparently supporting this movie out of nationalism with some rather nasty and ignorant comments about the middle east?

This video is a beautiful "fuck that noise" to this thread: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/18.869780-Lets-prove-movie-bob-wrong-derive-a-moral-from-American-Sniper?page=1, and it's awesome.

But yes, I agree on American Sniper just having nothing to say. I don't even think that it's broad enough to warrant people putting meaning in to it. There is either a slight hint at an argument or a slight hint that is contradicted later on. His brother has the typical "I hate war, fuck this shit!" attitude yet he's still fighting in the war years later. As far as I know, the US doesn't force people to stay in for more than one tour (though feel free to correct me if I'm wrong).

It's also really bad at talking about the man's life. To audiences outside of the US it may as well be just a typical good guy versus bad guy story about an American well... sniper. I had to tell the person sitting next to me that the camera quality had changed so drastically because it was a real person who died. The film doesn't even seem to acknowledge Chris Kyle as somebody who was real until the end, though in all fairness neither did Dallas Buyer's Club and that film managed to work pretty well as a story of a man's life after a traumatic event.

I think I liked the action because I've a soft spot for snipers, come to think of it. There really wasn't much to say about it beyond Bradley Cooper's cheek extending a good foot in front of his face every five or so minutes.

So... When is Greg Tito's name coming off the editor in chief credits, anyway? XD

Hey Bob, are you still pretending The Winter Soldier was at all relevant to American politics? Because while I don't doubt Sniper isn't too relevant either, at least it doesn't drop its plot halfway through and say "Post-911 Right = Nazis lol" in one of the most jarring and stupid plot holes this side of ME3's ending.

Also, I sincerely doubt 50SoG is going to be successful. Shooting it cost $40 million and while the book sold like hotcakes, very few people bothered to finish it; they just picked it up to see what the fuss was about and put it down soon after.

I feel this will turn into an American politics war soon.
Despite not being an American, I am versed in that... but I wont be the one starting it.

Instead I will say that I havent watched the movie yet. And I have no idea who Chris Kyle is.
!HOWEVER!

I do not understand how in the f*$king hell, you Bob can basically take SUCH a certain and concrete position about something as subjective as the quality and messages in a work of art?
That was just PLAIN UGLY as all hell.

*Obvious things that sadly must be hammered in again*
We CAN NOT ALL like or dislike the same damned things.

You thought Avengers was good? I almost FELL asleep through that movie. I dont consider it a good movie for me. In fact, it was probably the worst movie I watched in 2012. A waste of money.
You disliked Interstellar, yet I loved it.

You love yer Nintendo games, I love my STALKERs and Grand Strategies.
Some people love Bioshock Infinite... I don't get them, but big deal :(

Neither of us, or anyone else on this damned planet can REALLY claim a high ground on quality of a work of art. As that is NOT quantifiable. Never has been. Never will be. No matter how much we try. That cant be calculated. And never will be.

You went down in my eyes... again :(

*Note*
Someone may quote me and explain how Bob is actually thinking about WHY the movie is this successful. I know that. It is as obvious as it can be. These discussions are GOOD for movies and gaming. Some of those parts of the review make a lot of sense.
But taking a concrete position EVEN before you started your analysis or research on the success of something, is not the way to do it. It is the opposite. This aint how science of any kind or a fair critical analysis is done.
Conclusions are drawn at the end. Not at the beginning.

This is a movie I could never stomach, simply because is nothing but simple dick waving american army/patriotism bullshit, basically 'Murica Fuck Yeah: The movie. And yeah I really couldn't bother with something like this. Not that I dislike the US or its culture, but some parts of it are pretty damn stupid and or hypocritical.

Um, hate to say this Bob, but the whole point of the debate is not that the movie is poorly done but that all to many Hollywood types use it to take a dump on the soldiers and the general conservative/libertarian position.

Now I personally think that some of this is backlash form being insulted every five minutes by most film makers. (see also: all the faith films that came out last year) I mean can you at least admit that we are mot all the same and do your homework on theology? I don't care if you reject the message all I want is accuracy.

At least Bob didn't mistakenly stick that really awful Palin rant on Fox News. (Seriously the Escapist had a bad habit of misattributing things to that network)

If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

Charcharo:
I feel this will turn into an American politics war soon.
Despite not being an American, I am versed in that... but I wont be the one starting it.

Instead I will say that I havent watched the movie yet. And I have no idea who Chris Kyle is.
!HOWEVER!

I do not understand how in the f*$king hell, you Bob can basically take SUCH a certain and concrete position about something as subjective as the quality and messages in a work of art?
That was just PLAIN UGLY as all hell.

*Obvious things that sadly must be hammered in again*
We CAN NOT ALL like or dislike the same damned things.

You though Avengers was good? I almost FELL asleep through that. I dont consider it a good movie for me. In fact, it was probably the worst movie I watched in 2012. A waste of money.
You disliked Interstellar, yet I loved it.

You love yer Nintendo games, I love my STALKERs and Grand Strategies.
Some people love Bioshock Infinite... I don't get them, but big deal :(

Neither of us, or anyone else on this damned planet can REALLY claim a high ground on quality of a work of art. As that is NOT quantifiable. Never has been. Never will be. No matter how much we try. That cant be calculated. And never will be.

You went down in my eyes... again :(

*Note*
Someone may quote me and explain how Bob is actually thinking about WHY the movie is this successful. I know that. These discussions are GOOD. Some of those parts of the review make a lot of sense.
But taking a concrete position EVEN before you started your analysis or research is not the way to do it. It is the opposite. This aint how science of any kind or a fair critical analysis is done.
Conclusions are drawn at the end. Not at the beginning.

I think it's less so "American Sniper is just bad, stfu" and more so "please stop using American Sniper as a political weapon".

I'd say it's bad titling at fault here, since the video revolves around how American Sniper is a hit in America because it feeds into the insecurity spurred on by their recent wars by giving them a certain, moral righteousness on the "War on Terror".

jacobbanks:
Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

Why is this still a thing?

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

done nothing to earn it huh? so by that definition, anyone who does not want to or can't fight in a war have done nothing to earn a right that was granted to us by the Bill of Rights rectified in 1791, well before you and I were born.

Also, this movie was not given a limited release to VA organizations or military camps but to the public. As such, I would think that the public, having been the people who watch it, can have an opinion on it regardless of if it's about a veteran or not?

It might just be that not that many movies have come out directly about the Iraq war, and this is just an empty niche that needed filling.

ctlee93:

jacobbanks:
Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

Why is this still a thing?

It will always be a thing... Unless you think that you would be safe in a world without people willing to defend you and your loved ones.

I liked the reference to the Golgotha Chainsaw Massacre because it's basically the same situation ; it's another piece of culture being used as ammunition by ideologues who don't care about cinema as much as how they can sharpen it to stab their socio-political opponents.

And that's sad because when you make media into a political vessel it's not media anymore. I can't really say "this movie was successful" if the reason people went to see it is because they wanted to make a point.

Haven't seen the movie, don't care to.

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

This is ridiclous. I'm a huge supporter of the military and even work for the DoD, but I'm tired of this line. The last vets that fought for our freedoms were from WW2. And the freedoms "protected" in that war for the US was tenuous at best. We only got involved after Pearl Harbor was bombed, which wasn't much worse than a modern terrorist attack.

You're out of your mind if you think any of the people in the middle east are threatening our freedoms. You can definitely say that troops right now are working to ensure that we don't get attacked in a large scale way again. But what you can't say that our "freedoms" are being defended.

Until we get invaded, there are very few things that will be classified as protecting our freedoms when it comes to armed response.

the best thing about American Sniper is the butthurt it caused first by it's sheer existence and then the even bigger one by it's record breaking success

Verlander:
...aaand enter the people on here, saying that you're blinded by your opinions, or that your political slant skews your opinion on this. Not here yet? They will be.

Heh. People who are blinded by their own opinions claiming that someone else is blinded by their own opinions?

The irony, it screams.

I don't blame Bob for kicking the anthill, largely because it's growing and spraying righteous indignation all over everything. "Nobody understands us except for these fine, outstanding people who give our lonely voice a clarion call in this dark and terrible age where we must stand strong and fight against those who see us as monsters", said every side of every argument ever when a piece of fiction came along to show a bit of empathy for their perspective.

Everyone has opinions. Some of those opinions are backed by factual examination ("This is an awful movie/game/book/TV show, and this is how it fails.") and some use the fact that an opposing opinion exists ("This is a wonderful movie/game/book/TV show because this figure of authority doesn't share my opinion and this figure of authority hates it.")

This has always been. This will always be. We are on a form of media that exists for the endless debate to carry on. I'm not saying embrace the flames but I am saying there's a reason we have fire extinguishers.

Izanagi009:

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

done nothing to earn it huh? so by that definition, anyone who does not want to or can't fight in a war have done nothing to earn a right that was granted to us by the Bill of Rights rectified in 1791, well before you and I were born.

Also, this movie was not given a limited release to VA organizations or military camps but to the public. As such, I would think that the public, having been the people who watch it, can have an opinion on it regardless of if it's about a veteran or not?

Oh you can have an opinion... it just doesn't matter... and yes... compared to the men and women who have died protecting that piece of paper that says you can say what ever you want, Yes! you've done nothing for it.

jacobbanks:

ctlee93:

jacobbanks:
Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

Why is this still a thing?

It will always be a thing... Unless you think that you would be safe in a world without people willing to defend you and your loved ones.

You sound like a farce.

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

What a fucking wonderful sentiment. One of the reason why societies who see the army as something other than a tool in the broader array of government institutions bother me is because when you enshrine something, you make respect to it mandatory, meaning it's going to devolve into a corrupted mess, and you make of its members a clergy whose undue respect makes them lose the sense of their actual mission. The military becomes less the defence of the nation and more a class that it outwardly respected but silently shunned because nobody deals with it as it is, rather as they wish it was. And that's how we get people like you.

SlothfulCobra:
It might just be that not that many movies have come out directly about the Iraq war, and this is just an empty niche that needed filling.

Well more like not that many movies have come out about the Iraq war and haven't been ham fisted Bush bashing.
OT: Bob is getting better at this. His video made me see american sniper in a different light.

Micalas:
Haven't seen the movie, don't care to.

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

This is ridiclous. I'm a huge supporter of the military and even work for the DoD, but I'm tired of this line. The last vets that fought for our freedoms were from WW2. And the freedoms "protected" in that war for the US was tenuous at best. We only got involved after Pearl Harbor was bombed, which wasn't much worse than a modern terrorist attack.

You're out of your mind if you think any of the people in the middle east are threatening our freedoms. You can definitely say that troops right now are working to ensure that we don't get attacked in a large scale way again. But what you can't say that our "freedoms" are being defended.

Until we get invaded, there are very few things that will be classified as protecting our freedoms when it comes to armed response.

Enjoy your freedom of speech. Hopefully your piece of paper and its force field prevents anyone from punching you in the mouth for anything you say that may be offensive :)

Sigmund Av Volsung:

Charcharo:
I feel this will turn into an American politics war soon.
lysis is done.
Conclusions are drawn at the end. Not at the beginning.

I think it's less so "American Sniper is just bad, stfu" and more so "please stop using American Sniper as a political weapon".

I'd say it's bad titling at fault here, since the video revolves around how American Sniper is a hit in America because it feeds into the insecurity spurred on by their recent wars by giving them a certain, moral righteousness on the "War on Terror".

I honestly think it is both. That it is just a bad movie, nothing more and what you said.

BTW, my father liked it. We arent American. He was in the military though. Then again he likes such movies :P

For some reason I just think it's kind of funny that this is turning into a propaganda movie, where you either love it or you're unmerican. Wasn't the propaganda movie in Inglorious Bastards about a sniper too.

Westonbirt:

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

What a fucking wonderful sentiment. One of the reason why societies who see the army as something other than a tool in the broader array of government institutions bother me is because when you enshrine something, you make respect to it mandatory, meaning it's going to devolve into a corrupted mess, and you make of its members a clergy whose undue respect makes them lose the sense of their actual mission. The military becomes less the defence of the nation and more a class that it outwardly respected but silently shunned because nobody deals with it as it is, rather as they wish it was. And that's how we get people like you.

Enjoy your freedom of speech. Hopefully your piece of paper and its force field prevents anyone from punching you in the mouth for anything you say that may be offensive :)

jacobbanks:

Izanagi009:

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

done nothing to earn it huh? so by that definition, anyone who does not want to or can't fight in a war have done nothing to earn a right that was granted to us by the Bill of Rights rectified in 1791, well before you and I were born.

Also, this movie was not given a limited release to VA organizations or military camps but to the public. As such, I would think that the public, having been the people who watch it, can have an opinion on it regardless of if it's about a veteran or not?

Oh you can have an opinion... it just doesn't matter... and yes... compared to the men and women who have died protecting that piece of paper that says you can say what ever you want, Yes! you've done nothing for it.

You signed up just to spark this debate? Well done.

Also, thanks for dismissing 99.9% of the current population of the Earth as having opinions which don't matter. That's cool too.

Tanklover:
This is a movie I could never stomach, simply because is nothing but simple dick waving american army/patriotism bullshit, basically 'Murica Fuck Yeah: The movie. And yeah I really couldn't bother with something like this. Not that I dislike the US or its culture, but some parts of it are pretty damn stupid and or hypocritical.

I don't see how it could be turned into "Murica Fuck Yeah" sensibly considering, from what I gather, the movie is about how it changes people and often not for the better. He pushes his family away time and time again because he's become addicted to war and it tears him apart, only to end in him being killed back home in a shooting range by another man whose mind has been lost to war. That doesn't paint war in a pretty picture for me. That doesn't seem like something that people would strive to re-create for themselves, personally.

Charcharo:

Sigmund Av Volsung:

Charcharo:
I feel this will turn into an American politics war soon.
lysis is done.
Conclusions are drawn at the end. Not at the beginning.

I think it's less so "American Sniper is just bad, stfu" and more so "please stop using American Sniper as a political weapon".

I'd say it's bad titling at fault here, since the video revolves around how American Sniper is a hit in America because it feeds into the insecurity spurred on by their recent wars by giving them a certain, moral righteousness on the "War on Terror".

I honestly think it is both. That it is just a bad movie, nothing more and what you said.

BTW, my father liked it. We arent American. He was in the military though. Then again he likes such movies :P

I'll admit that MovieBob isn't the best in articulating his points correctly. That said, I'm pretty sure you can still enjoy the movie so long as after watching it you don't un-ironically go "FUCK YEAH AMERICA KILL THEM MUSLIMS THIS MOVIE IS AWESOME!!11!".

That would be a real problem since you're using your own enjoyment of the movie and your patriotism to cannonise it as some sort of symbol of the "war on terror".

mjharper:

jacobbanks:

Izanagi009:

done nothing to earn it huh? so by that definition, anyone who does not want to or can't fight in a war have done nothing to earn a right that was granted to us by the Bill of Rights rectified in 1791, well before you and I were born.

Also, this movie was not given a limited release to VA organizations or military camps but to the public. As such, I would think that the public, having been the people who watch it, can have an opinion on it regardless of if it's about a veteran or not?

Oh you can have an opinion... it just doesn't matter... and yes... compared to the men and women who have died protecting that piece of paper that says you can say what ever you want, Yes! you've done nothing for it.

You signed up just to spark this debate? Well done.

Also, thanks for dismissing 99.9% of the current population of the Earth as having opinions which don't matter. That's cool too.

I actually did... And oh no, you misunderstand. When it comes to things that are about the effects of coming back from war and the effects of war. Non war veterans and their opinion of said portrayals don't matter. I'm sure if we we're talking about fixing a car or preforming lab research you wouldn't care about the opinion of a non mechanic or non scientist.

jacobbanks:

Micalas:
Haven't seen the movie, don't care to.

jacobbanks:
If you're not a veteran, then this movie wasn't for you and your opinion of it doesn't matter. Enjoy the freedom of speech for which you've done nothing to earn.

This is ridiclous. I'm a huge supporter of the military and even work for the DoD, but I'm tired of this line. The last vets that fought for our freedoms were from WW2. And the freedoms "protected" in that war for the US was tenuous at best. We only got involved after Pearl Harbor was bombed, which wasn't much worse than a modern terrorist attack.

You're out of your mind if you think any of the people in the middle east are threatening our freedoms. You can definitely say that troops right now are working to ensure that we don't get attacked in a large scale way again. But what you can't say that our "freedoms" are being defended.

Until we get invaded, there are very few things that will be classified as protecting our freedoms when it comes to armed response.

Enjoy your freedom of speech. Hopefully your piece of paper and its force field prevents anyone from punching you in the mouth for anything you say that may be offensive :)

Its so bizzare to me comments like this. I mean what does freedom of speech and being punched in the face have to do with one another? Or why does the poster seem to think that freedom of speech is an ineffectial passage of the bill of rights thats protects nothing? OR how does the poster believe that violence against a speaker proves that the speakers point is invalid?

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