Director: David Ayer
Starring: Brad Pitt, John Bernthal, Michael Peña, Logan Lerman, Shia LaBeouf, Jason Isaacs
Brad Pitt has new hair in Fury! Yet the film is so much more than just that. David Ayer’s men-in-a-tank movie is a hard-hitting, thoroughly enjoyable, yet flawed World War II flick; possibly one of the best we have seen since Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan.
Set in Germany, in April 1945, a battle-hardened army sergeant named Don ‘Wardaddy’ Collier (Brad Pitt) commands a Sherman tank and his five-man crew: Boyd ‘Bible’ Swan (Shia LeBeouf), Grady ‘Coon-Ass’ Travis (Jon Bernthal), Trini ‘Gordo’ Garcia (Michael Peña), who are later joined by rookie soldier Norman ‘Machine’ Ellison (Logan Lerman). Wardaddy has to lead his crew into a life-threatening mission into enemy territory. Out-numbered and severely out-gunned, they face overwhelming odds in their heroic attempts to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.
Where Ayer’s film really excels is in its moments of brutal action. Fury is at its best when we are inside the Sherman tank (which becomes a principal character in itself) and watching the brutal events of the Second World War unfold onscreen. Being inside the tank with these soldiers on the edge is utterly gripping.
Ideals are peaceful, history is violent
Each actor pulls their weight; Bernthal, Peña, Lerman and, surprisingly, Shia LaBeouf are all exceptional in Fury, but this film is all about Pitt. He is the main man both in the tank and onscreen; however, at some points, Lt. Aldo Raine from Inglorious Bastards did come to mind. That said, Brad Pitt is still an undeniably awe-inspiring screen presence – despite not a single perfectly coiffed hair falling out of place throughout the whole film.
Yet Fury isn’t without its faults. There are certain scenes that ruin the flow of the film slightly – watch out for a moment involving eggs and a topless Pitt. Moreover, watching the bullets flash across screen is not unlike watching the laser blasters out of Star Wars. Why are the bullets red and green?
That said, Fury is a remarkably enjoyable war film, something we haven’t seen for a while, which is at its best when its about five men in a tank, striving to survive in the harshest and most brutal of environments.