Film Review – The Hurt Locker

-by Janak Samtani


It is 11.35 pm and the film has just ended. It has left me numb. No judgements. It is 11.43 pm and I am still walking towards the bus stop. I am still numb. I can still hear my heavy breathing. It is 12.14 am now. I have just reached home and I feel safe.

If you give me a word to describe this film, then I will say spectacular.

The Hurt Locker does not talk about the American occupation in Iraq. Neither about the oil diplomacy. It does not even mention Bush, Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney, who decided to bomb Iraq. It is the story of three other Americans who are a bomb squad on missions to disarm bombs planted by the insurgents. There is no background score to influence your visuals. On every mission, you will only hear the co-ordination between the specialist and the two soldiers. There are no hoax calls or time wasters. You are made to feel part of every mission and you will not want any bomb to go off.

Jeremy Renner plays SSgt. William James as the bomb specialist. He needs that adrenaline rush every time he is sent out. He does not want to think about what ifs. On the other hand, the two soldiers covering the specialist from any enemy fire are no doubt courageous, but do want to get out of the danger spot as soon as possible. They are played by Anthony Mackie as Sgt. JT Sanborn and Brian Geraghty as Spc. Owen Eldridge. Prior to this I have only seen one film of Jeremy Renner. This helped me see the trio as only a squad and not as any renowned actors playing a squad. There are also several cameos in the film, which I felt they could have done without and probably shortened the film by ten minutes.

You might be following your national news regularly, which dedicates few seconds or a minute of its air time on the bombs going off on Iraqi streets, the death toll, and the instability there. Now you have a film on it, which shows everything that the news leaves out. Reaching to this microscopic level, by blanketing every political aspect and military superior-subordination aspects out, any viewer will be able to relate to this film.

A suggestion, see the film alone. You sure do not want to be distracted on the missions.


I salute the bomb squads in India who enter death traps to save miserable people like me. This is their story too.- J

17 Responses to “Film Review – The Hurt Locker”

  1. October 30, 2009 at 03:36

    Nice review Janak… didn’t know about this one but now the torrent has started… 🙂


  2. October 30, 2009 at 05:51

    Janak, don’t misguide the youth of our nation. Saurin, let’s never waste money on things like original DVDs and caramel popcorn.


  3. 5 Sam
    October 30, 2009 at 06:02

    Dude, your review is incrediblw and indeed portrays the movie in a very apt way.It surely promises to be an hair raising thriller with an explosive action. It makes it that more enticing and the plight of a bomb squad whether to diffuse or not is something worth watching even for a million bucks.

    I have grown up watching cult action movies and i love every frame of such explosive action oriented movies. I am delighted to have read this review thanks to my friend, Adi. Dude, you have an impressive knack of presenting a review. May you keep enlightening me from distinguishing a powerful movie from an ordinary one with your insightful reviews for annals to come.

    Keep rocking, bro. 🙂


  4. October 30, 2009 at 07:49

    “Oops sorry, its downloaded… 😦 ”

    Shiiiiiiiit. Now?


  5. 8 Rishu
    April 6, 2010 at 09:13

    great review man…. will get this now…


  6. 10 Sam
    April 6, 2010 at 09:31

    I hate this shitty movie! Hurt Locker can Kiss my Ass! I can’t believe, this movie was chosen over ‘AVTAAR’! – A mistake of gigantic proportions. Blahhhhhhhhh


  7. April 6, 2010 at 09:57

    Someone told me to go watch it, said it’s “a very good film”.

    Thanks for the review, seems like my sort of film.


  8. 13 Sam
    April 6, 2010 at 18:25

    Dude, I lost a bet and that cost me 2 grands! I was vouching for Avtaar. I personally was waiting for James Cameron to lift the coveted Best Director’s Oscar!

    See, for me, Avtaar is a breakthrough movie that has ushered movie making into another plane altogether. It has raised the bar of excellence and finesse.

    It was one man’s imagination pitted against one woman’s emotions and result proved it! Just coz she happens to be the First ever Woman Director to lift the Oscar. I was mighty disappointed. I mean, Pandora is truly amazing.

    But the storyline of Hurt Locker and how USA under Bush regime has treated Iraq and how they ransacked under the veil of deceit to smoke out Saddam Hussein. It is nothing new, my friend. Everyone knows about USA’s vested interest in Iraq! But the direction was top notch, tale was poignant.

    But being from Ad fraternity, ideas rule for me. So I laterally and emotionally rooted for James Cameron’s epic ‘Avtaar’ than ‘Hurt Locker’. As a movie buff, I loved both but enjoyed ‘Avtaar’ immensely. 🙂


    • 14 Janak
      April 7, 2010 at 03:31

      Two thousand rupees on that shit? Next time please consult me.

      Raised the bar & break-through? Haha! Not one bit. You remember the general in that film. That idiot was standing & having a hot drink in the cock-pit when the massive-helicopter was taking a turn. Everyone but him was seated & wearing a seat-belt. There were a lot of other loop-holes which i noticed during the film.

      It is not HL, but Avtaar which had nothing new to say & that’s why it did not win. James Cameron did not make an epic film. He could have made an epic film. He & his crew just happened to forget the most important component in a film – the story. Avtaar won awards for visuals, where it deserved.

      Fuck the Oscars. Just because only Hollywood films are playing in the cinemas in India does not mean that they are the only ones making movies in the west. I’m not even talking about good movies here. Even BAFTA awarded HL the best film.

      If you realize something, the Oscar awards are one way of promoting their films & presence all over. It is about the business of making films. The only way to kill this monopoly of international cinema in India (outside the film fests) is to start showing BAFTA, Sundance Awards and their likes on tv. If the market is not there, you have to create it. This is another discussion and requires another post!

      Coming back to HL, please read my review once again. I’ve clearly written what it’s about & what it’s not showing.

      The invasion of Iraq is in the 7th year now. Fuck Pandora, start thinking & act before another country is raped by the U.S!


  9. April 9, 2010 at 14:48

    Can’t predict games. Can anyone, unless if it is too obvious?


  10. August 7, 2010 at 15:14

    Thrilling watch! Thanks for the review, Janak!

    \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/


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