A lot of people will probably praise this movie because it’s the patriotic thing to do. The true story is based on Olympian Louis Zamperini’s struggles during World War II. (Fun fact, he was also the Grand Marshall in the 2015 Rose Parade, but died this past year. His family was in the parade in his place.)
I want to phrase this correctly, because I am totally on board for respecting our veterans’ struggles and giving them the respect they deserve. But to me, all Zamperini did… was survive. I watched a two hour movie about a soldier who survived a POW camp. And he happened to be in the Olympics before then. Okay… a lot of famous or noteworthy people served and survived wars. His story is special because?
I kept waiting for the answer to be explained to me. For two hours I waited. Wanting there to be some hidden message in the movie. Scenes dragged on, where, well, all the POW people did exactly what they trained to do. No one did anything noteworthy. No heroics. They all simply survived.
I agree Zamperini’s story should be told. All veterans should have their story told. But this movie told me nothing a simple newspaper article couldn’t. The only part of the movie that tugged on my heartstrings was the real life clip played during the credits, of Zamperini carrying the Olympic torch at age 80. And it would have touched me just as much if I’d seen it on the news.
So… I’d recommend passing on this movie. Sorry, but you’ll probably get a more riveting story talking to a real life veteran than sitting through this two hour propaganda movie for Louis Zamperini.