The Yellow Birds (2017)

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The Yellow Birds: Directed by Alexandre Moors. With Alden Ehrenreich, Daniel Jose Molina, Mikey Collins, Tye Sheridan. Two young soldiers, Bartle (21) and Murph (18) navigate the terrors of the Iraq war under the command of the older, troubled Sergeant Sterling. All the while, Bartle is tortured by a promise he made to Murph’s mother before their deployment.

“For the first half hour or so I didnu0026#39;t know what to make of this film. The tone was all over the place and I couldnu0026#39;t tell if the filmmaker wanted to make a War film or a drama.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eIu0026#39;ll do my best not to spoil anything, but it wouldnu0026#39;t matter if I did, as this film isnu0026#39;t worth your time. It was very clear throughout the film that the writers/filmmaker, either werenu0026#39;t very knowledgeable of the US Army and how soldiers address each other, conduct themselves, or what battle drills are or how they are conducted. u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eThese two young soldiers we follow constantly refer to a non-commissioned officer as u0026quot;siru0026quot;. Anybody who has served knows that is a big no no and would earn them a nice smoke session(forced strenuous PT) until they address him properly. This is just one of many issues with the film.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eI honestly have no clue when this movie is set. Based on their uniforms I assume it takes place during the early stages of the invasion of Iraq, yet bars and private homes have modern flat screen wall mounted tv sets? Also there is a scene near the beginning, of the two leads meeting each other at a shooting range, but I couldnu0026#39;t tell if it was supposed to be at bootcamp, or at their assigned duty station. This film is rife with this style of poor writing.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eThe War scenes shouldu0026#39;ve either been cut entirely or presented more ambiguously. Because these actors and the director slept walked right through them. None of it felt earned or organic, which is partially due to the lifeless foley. The rifles, LMGs, explosions, hiss/snaps of incoming fire etc. all sounded like it was meant to be marketed to the elderly, so it wouldnu0026#39;t hurt their ears. Iu0026#39;m surprised nobody stepped in and told this director to get some kind of energy and passion out of the actors. u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eBy about the fifty minute mark it was clear that they were going for a mystery/drama, but even that felt unearned. None of the dramatic scenes felt natural, it felt as though the writer was searching for something to keep the audience invested.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eThis wasnu0026#39;t the worst War film Iu0026#39;ve seen, but itu0026#39;s not a good one either. It tries too hard to be multiple different things at once, the acting was average at best, there wasnu0026#39;t enough build up to any of the plot points, the directing was weak for the most part. There is a good movie in here…. Somewhere. They just couldnu0026#39;t find it.”


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