Intense and realistic, The Outpost punched way above its weight and will be remembered as one of the great war movies. I think that the first time I saw this type of movie was in 2001 with Ridley Scott’s Black Hawk Down. The formula is pretty simple but extremely effective, especially when executed with heart and soul. They didn’t have a huge budget and apart from Orlando Bloom and Scott Eastwood, most of the cast is relatively unknown. Considering this, their performances were committed and convincing, especially Eastwood’s. If there ever was any doubt that he’s a great actor, it’s completely gone now. With a suspenseful and ominous atmosphere that slowly increases in intensity until it finally explodes with shouts contact contact, this is one hell of a movie. It focuses on the specifics of the battle, how different elements influenced its course and what could’ve been done differently. Also, it should be noted that this movie has almost nothing in common with Outpost, a zombie horror from 2008.

As you might have guessed, The Outpost is based on true events of the Battle of Kamdesh in Afghanistan. The basis for the script was Jake Tapper’s book The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor. If you’re not a fan of the guy or American philosophy of endless war, you still can still enjoy it. Something I remember discussing in infinitely more promotional Act of Valor. This is a story about people who found themselves waging a futile and insanely dumb war, risking their lives, and following questionable and unclear orders. 

I place the blame squarely on the shoulders of politicians and the military-industrial complex always looking for another war. Only then we can take a closer look at people who ended up actually fighting the war. Reasons they cite for coming to this far away land are various but completely understandable. Especially when you consider just how unjust and rigged the system in the USA is. Something that was apparent immediately after the end of WWII and the first wave of foreign interventions. But I digress.

Well-thought-out and carefully constructed, The Outpost will show you how soldiers lived and felt during their tours. An authentic telling of the crushing boredom interrupted by moments of sheer terror and anxiety. It’s reminiscent of Jarhead’s atmosphere, only with a lot more action. This will give you enough time to get the lay of the land and meet the unit. And while we’re on a subject of similar movies here’s a short list: 13 Hours, Lone Survivor, Hacksaw Ridge, Dunkirk, 1917, and 12 Strong.

As it is obligatory when we’re talking about the war in Afghanistan, here’s a list of documentaries that you should check out: Korengal, The Battle for Marjah, Only the Dead, Restrepo, Armadillo and The Hornet’s Nest. I couldn’t stop myself from watching these war documentaries. You watch just one and you’re hooked. They will explain how thing were and how things are today much more eloquently than I could ever did.

Director: Rod Lurie

Writers: Paul Tamasy, Eric Johnson, Jake Tapper

Cast: Scott Eastwood, Orlando Bloom, Milo Gibson, Jacob Scipio, Caleb Landry Jones, Jack Kesy, Will Attenborough, Ernest Cavazos

Fun Facts: Scott Eastwood (Clint Eastwood), Milo Gibson (Mel Gibson), and James Jagger (Mick Jagger) are all sons of famous directors/actors/musicians. Will Attenborough is the grandson of famed director/actor Richard Attenborough, and Scott Alda Coffey is the grandson of actor Alan Alda.

Rating:

IMDb Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt3833480/

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