Civil War

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War Action Drama
109 min     6.988     2024     Finland


In the near future, a group of war journalists attempt to survive while reporting the truth as the United States stands on the brink of civil war.


Manuel São Bento wrote:
FULL SPOILER-FREE REVIEW @ "Civil War attests to Alex Garland’s fascinating ability to create impactful narratives that provoke deep discussions, beyond his unwavering commitment to the themes and characters at hand, without falling into preachy stances. A film that transcends political boundaries, focusing on war journalism, the moral dilemmas faced by those who risk their lives to tell stories that cannot be ignored, and the personal transformation necessary to carry out such an inhuman task. The character complexity and the chilling intensity of the cinematography and sound production contribute to a powerfully engaging, repeatedly shocking audiovisual experience. It’s a tribute to a profession often forgotten, but equally a challenge for viewers to reflect on critical issues in contemporary society." Rating: A-
r96sk wrote:
Terrific movie! 'Civil War' is a blast from beginning to end, I enjoyed everything about it to be honest. It features an interesting story that is told with excellence. My biggest takeaway is the sound design, which is outstanding; literally from the first seconds post-BBFC black card. It is paced absolutely spot on, the end comes around so quick; probably because I was hooked. The cast do great jobs. Obvious credit to Kirsten Dunst, Wagner Moura and Stephen McKinley Henderson, they are all ace. Cailee Spaeny is my personal standout though, what an excellent showing from her! Engrossing viewing. Highly recommended. Very much want to rewatch it already.
CinemaSerf wrote:
Nope, sorry, this just didn't work for me. It appears that there is a civil war amongst these United States. California and Texas have seceded from the Union and Florida seems to be having a wobble too. The President (Nick Offerman) makes a speech assuring the rest of his country that they've nothing to worry about, but hardened photo-journalist "Lee" (Kirsten Dunst) and her cohort "Joel" (Wagner Moura) reckon that the conflict is quite likely to come to an altogether different conclusion. They bravely decide to travel the 800-odd miles to Washington DC to try and interview him. Their out-of-shape veteran associate "Sammy" (Stephen McKinley Henderson) thinks they are mad, but also wants in on the trip. Meantime, the enthusiastic young photographer "Jessie" (Cailee Spaeny) has managed to hook up with the team and so, rather implausibly, they agree to take her on this perilous journey. It's that implausibility that carries the whole thing as the completely preposterous scenario unfolds before us. No effort is made to fill us in on the cause of this warfare. Did the President seize power? Was he elected from a party these states didn't vote for? Are they just brutal and well armed revolutionaries? Then we have the ridiculous dialogue - usually from Henderson with his "always take fuel when you can" or "this way only leads to death" type profundities as the group travel through a remarkably stable, well fuelled and provisioned, nation where there's hardly the merest hint of mass migrations, fear or terror. Indeed, their blue "Press" helmets and a little bit of kevlar seem to render them immune to the deadly drama that they are supposed to be experiencing. Jesse Plemons makes a brief appearance - that actually leads to the only vaguely exciting part of this chronology, but otherwise it's all a bit on a non-event. Dunst starts off as a strong and characterful woman but that dwindles away and, well, I was just a bit bored as the denouement hoved into view with all the predicability of the sun coming up. It's bitty, episodic, unrealistic and populated with characters in whom I simply could not believe. Sure, maybe it's supposed to be outlandishly apocalyptic, but it reminded me for the most part of an episode of "Falling Skies" - only without the aliens. Perhaps it might resonate better with an American audience? I'm not one of them and this didn't.
Brent Marchant wrote:
Cautionary tales often have some of the most significant impact when brought to life on the big screen, and that’s certainly the case with the latest offering from writer-director Alex Garland. The filmmaker’s gripping tale of a quartet of journalists (Kirsten Dunst, Wagner Moura, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Cailee Spaeny) covering a civil war in a dystopian version of America of the near future follows the reporters as they make their way from New York to Washington via a circuitous route that shows them all sides of this nightmarish scenario. Essentially a road trip film, “Civil War” provides the principals and viewers with an array of images and situations graphically depicting what’s left of the US as a distraught population attempts to make sense of the circumstances and find ways to survive. The purpose of the protagonists’ journey is to secure an interview (likely the last one) with a corrupt, egomaniacal President (Nick Offerman) as rebel forces close in on the capital. They set out on this treacherous odyssey despite the dangers involved both in making the trip and in their roles as journalists, who are looked on with suspicion and have been accused of fanning the flames of the hostilities. While some have complained that the film doesn’t provide enough social and political background about the conflict, I submit that this consideration is fundamentally unnecessary: Garland is making an unadulterated statement here that, when the bullets start flying, ideology won’t matter and no one will care, a point driven home with chilling clarity over and over. The madness that consumes the population is all that’s important at that juncture, one driven by bald-faced hostility on steroids both among the combatants and the overzealousness of the reporters in seeking to “get the story,” no matter what. In achieving this end, the filmmaker holds nothing back, making this an often-difficult watch, one definitely not for the squeamish or faint of heart. But the picture’s message is one of grave importance, especially in today’s trying, polarized climate. We’d be wise to pay attention to what’s being said in this important work, handily the best – and most troubling – release of 2024 thus far.
edrddz wrote:
The film, although set in a context of armed conflict, deviates from the traditional war theme to focus on war photojournalists, promoting a perspective on the work of such professionals. Through a series of small scenes, the director seeks to compose a portrait of these professionals' actions on the battlefield without declaring the reasons for the war or identifying the sides involved. Each scene, individually, is well-executed, standing out for the quality of cinematography and an immersive sound work that amplifies the tension. However, these scenes, although effective individually, fail to come together cohesively. The result is a film that seems less than the sum of its parts. The main problem with the film is a lack of depth. Although technically well-produced, particularly in terms of audio, the film falls short of a deeper approach, which could have elevated it from a mere display of impactful scenes to a truly impactful work.
MovieGuys wrote:
In spite of its pretensions, Civil War is essentially a derivative affair filled with calculatedly disturbing visuals and violent exposition. Character development and a functioning back story are largely absent, from Civil War. This is an exposition driven road trip from hell, with a nihilistic objective, that plays out to a predictable conclusion. That does not really leave a lot, for the viewer, to take away from this film. A film which should have a lot to say but is, instead, conspicuously silent. Perhaps this is a reaction to the climate of division and fear that exists in the USA today? That said, why make a film about something contentious, if you have nothing contentious to say? In summary, this film really needed to be more opinionated, even if that means offering up opposing perspectives. Instead, it offends no one (as is the norm these days) by saying little to nothing, of any real consequence.
dumasori wrote:
**Not bad** I stared with low expectations, but this movies indeed turned out to be a good one. Fantastic story, acting, direction. No major complaints. Entertaining and thought provoking. Well done!
akerusan wrote:
I really enjoyed this movie, wan't expecting much and got a lot. recommend.
Chandler Danier wrote:
I wonder if the older guy gets with the young lady. He definitely worked for it. Bet he knows exactly how many near death experiences it takes before they fall into his arms. Seems like a lot just to bang someone, though. News, news, news. Gotta get that story.
TheSceneSnobs wrote:
This film is wonderfully chilling, with an atmosphere that haunts you long after the credits roll. The familiar settings of cities, towns, and roads serve as a stark backdrop to a raging war within the United States, creating a sense of unsettling normalcy disrupted by chaos. The film’s atmosphere is one of its strongest elements, expertly crafted to keep viewers on edge. The juxtaposition of familiar, everyday settings with the terror of internal conflict adds a layer of realism that intensifies the horror. Kirsten Dunst delivers one of her best performances in this film, bringing depth and nuance to her role. Her portrayal captures the fear, resilience, and complexity of a character navigating through turmoil. The supporting cast is equally fantastic, each bringing their characters to life with authenticity and emotional weight. The film’s themes are deeply resonant, exploring the terrifying implications of a society on the brink of collapse. The narrative delves into the human psyche, examining how people react under extreme pressure and the moral dilemmas they face. In conclusion, this movie is a masterclass in atmospheric horror. It sticks with you like a dark cloud, leaving a lasting impression with its chilling narrative and powerful performances. The entire cast deliver exceptional work, supported by top-notch filmmaking that brings every terrifying detail to life. This film is not just a horror story but a poignant reflection on the human condition, making it a must-watch for fans of the genre and anyone seeking a thought-provoking cinematic experience.