Flash Movie Review: Unbroken

Appearing not so dissimilar from the uniqueness of an individual’s fingerprints is a person’s pain threshold. I am curious to know what determines someone’s tolerance to pain. Is it genetic, environmental or mind over matter; I have seen people’s reactions go from one extreme to the other. One friend of mine is hypersensitive to any type of discomfort; a pinprick will cause them to let out a loud wail. Another friend could be in pain but one would never know by looking at them. If anything they may not walk as fast as they normally do; but if you did not know, they would appear to be having an average day. Though I am not comfortable comparing one person’s reactions to pain to another, I can appreciate those individuals who overcome intense suffering. One of the places where I have witnessed a person’s courage on display has been at the health and fitness centers where I have classes. Seeing people battle back from serious health issues, some involving major surgery and/or artificial limb replacement, has been humbling. I have watched with awe as I have watched them struggling to walk a single lap around the indoor track or try to lift a 2 pound weight to their chest. Every single one of them is a hero to me.    INCREDIBLE and heroic would not have been terms used to describe Louis Zamperini, played by Jack O’Connell (Starred Up, 300: Rise of an Empire), if he had not transformed himself from a wild hooligan into an Olympic athlete and U.S. Air Force bombardier. However, it was because of those earlier experiences that enabled him to survive not only the sea but a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp during World War II. This film festival winning biographical drama was directed by Angelina Jolie (Maleficent, Salt). Based on Louis’ life, his story was bigger than this movie. I felt Angelina had a good eye for blocking scenes and I understood she worked at getting a PG-13 rating for this film. However, I believe she was too reserved in bringing Louis’ story to life. For what he endured I thought there would have been more emotional intensity to the scenes. There were times where I felt things were dragged out longer than necessary; I was starting to get bored. This may have been part of the reason I did not connect with Jack or newcomer Takamasa Ishihara who played Watanabe a/k/a The Bird; they could have been pushed harder to deliver a stronger performance. I recently saw a television special about Louis and from it I knew his story would have been challenging for any director to do it justice. Angelina gave it a good try but I felt this movie needed more of everything.


2 1/2 stars

About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on December 26, 2014, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. Very nice review and it confirms my feelings about the film. Its not that I think it will be a bad movie, I just can’t get myself excited about it at all.

  2. I have often pondered on the subject of pain tolerance as well. I’ve experienced and survived brutal tortures but I would describe myself as having low tolerance for pain. I don’t like movies about torture so I’ll skip this one.

    • I understand, I have a hard time watching movies that contain scenes of torture and bullying. Thank you for taking the time to share your feelings here; I appreciate it deeply.

  3. Yeah, I don’t want to see it. I feel a powerful story being overshadowed by sappiness.

  4. Thank you for the review. I was somewhat inspired to see this film because of its latest trailer, but now, I’m just not sure. I’ll wait for a rental on this one.

  5. I appreciate the review on this one – I was on the fence about going to see it because WWII stories hold a high level of interest for me. Will try to catch this one later…too many good ones out right now. Oscar season…yummy, yummy, yummy. 🙂

  6. Have to say I don’t’the really agree and thought the movie astounding. I felt I lived every moment and that the performers were really excellent .
    I’m sure the film will have all sorts of responses but for me this has been one of the most powerful of 2014.
    The cinematographer, Roger Deakins, did yet another stunning job ….

    • I am thrilled this film moved you in such a way. I am curious, did you read the book by chance? If so, how did the 2 compare? Thank you for taking the time to stop and share your thoughts, I appreciate it.

      • No i didntvread it but am now intrigued to and had actually read very littke about the film when i saw it… Am now following you because i love a movie and enjoyed your comments!

  7. So apt review! I watched the movie and found it good. But it could have been definitely more better with some emotional side of the protagonist. It could have been a more inspiring movie then.

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