This tank battle themed movie could have been so much more than it was. It had the budget, the special effects and even the cast. But it mostly misses the mark. The characters are so over-the-top that they border on cartoonish at times. I thought Brad Pitt was good and Shia LaBeouf was decent but even they had moments where the director should have said “let’s do another take and this time pull back a little and play it straight, like its actually you in the tank.”. I realize they were trying to build iconic characters on screen but sometimes the material is good enough you don’t have to put it on thick.
Quick story: The actor Jon Bernthal who played “Grady Travis” in this movie did an interview where he talked to Joe Rogan about Shia Labeouf. He mentioned that the guy was so into the role that he yanked his own tooth out “because he thought his character shouldn’t have a tooth”. See the interview here
I think that the movie suffers from this type of thing where everyone is trying too hard to be epic, too hard to be Saving Private Ryan. They have dirt and blood on their face and never have the human urge to wipe it off. The only time you don’t do this is when you are aware of it, because it is movie make up, and you consciously don’t wipe your face.
Redeeming factors include the fact that they were able to utilize modern cgi to get a good battlefield aesthetic. The tank battles felt real and the star of these effects was the tracer ammunition effect. Tracers are bullets that have phosphorous embedded in the rear-end of them so when fired, they glow brightly and trace their way to the target. The shooter can then adjust their fire accordingly. Many times in movies this feature has been underwhelming, such as in Apocalypse Now and Platoon when they literally used bottle rockets to simulate the effect. I don’t blame Francis Ford Coppola or Oliver Stone for doing that at all. It was the best available option they had at the time and it served its purpose, which was providing a 3 dimensional feel to the battlefield. Anyway, the tracers looked very real in Fury, the best I have seen yet, Maybe they overused the effect just a tiny too much to where it began to look like a Star Wars movie and not a 20th Century battlefield.
Redeeming factor number 2: there was a pretty intense scene in the middle of the movie where they were in the village having lunch with some local females. The ladies were great actors and the scene felt legit. There was tension between the soldiers and the ladies at first and as soon as that broke, the other soldiers came in and tensions spiked again. You get the real feeling that everyone is hanging on to reality by just a thread.
Anyway, I give this movie 65 potatoes out of 100. This score means that the movie is good enough to watch if you are into war dramas, action flicks or are a fan of any of these starring actors. If you are none of these things, I say you should probably skip it.