The story of the first major battle of the American phase of the Vietnam War, and the soldiers on both sides that fought it, while their wives wait nervously and anxiously at home for the good news or the bad news.
A marksman living in exile is coaxed back into action after learning of a plot to kill the President. Ultimately double-crossed and framed for the attempt, he goes on the run to find the real killer and the reason he was set up.
Navy S.E.A.L. sniper Chris Kyle's pinpoint accuracy saves countless lives on the battlefield and turns him into a legend. Back home to his wife and kids after four tours of duty, however, Chris finds that it is the war he can't leave behind.
Pearl Harbor is a classic tale of romance set during a war that complicates everything. It all starts when childhood friends Rafe and Danny become Army Air Corps pilots and meet Evelyn, a Navy nurse. Rafe falls head over heels and next thing you know Evelyn and Rafe are hooking up. Then Rafe volunteers to go fight in Britain and Evelyn and Danny get transferred to Pearl Harbor. While Rafe is off fighting everything gets completely whack and next thing you know everybody is in the middle of an air raid we now know as "Pearl Harbor."Written by
A speech by Evelyn (Kate Beckinsale) which tells how America helped win the war despite the attack at Pearl Harbor has been altered for Japanese and German releases, with the word "us" changed to "America's" See more »
Kaulana Ohilo Hanakahi
Written by Lena Machado
Performed by The Kalima Brothers
Courtesy of Tantalus Records, Inc., Cord International, and Hana Ola Records
By permission of Bully Music, LLC See more »
Pearl Harbor is Hollywood at its most ambitious. From glossy photography, beautiful wide-angle shots, eye-widening special effects and exceptionally good-looking people playing the lead characters, it offers a lot of eye candy to those who are willing to sit through the long movie. In fact, it reminds me of a big cake with a recipe in which the makers tried to include all the tried-and-true ingredients of a commercially successful movie: visual treats, humor, drama, action and a story involving love, passion, friendship, vengeance and a good dose of patriotism. It almost seems as if director Michael Bay wanted to challenge the audience with all these elements to be entertained by a movie twice the length of a typical feature without lapsing into boredom. If that was the challenge then he succeeded: it was entertaining, it really did not feel like three hours, and I, at least, did not feel bored at any time during the movie.
My impression is that most of the negative reviews are critical of the movie because they are looking for something that went beyond its intentions. Definitely, A Saving Private Ryan this movie ain't. But I believe that one should evaluate a movie, as one would any other work of art, for what it is and not for what it should be. Take the love story, for example. It has been criticized by many as being extraneous. It is true that a story about philosophical and ethical questions raised by war (and treated in Ryan) would have been more fitting in the context. As it stands, the life-changing attack could have been replaced by a natural disaster without losing much from the gist of the story. But what would a quintessential great Hollywood production be without a love story? Besides, the beauty of Kate Beckinsale adds to the visual aesthetics. Another possible charge against the movie might be that it tends to glamorize war. That may be true, but again, this movie is not meant to be a propaganda call for arms, but just a few hours of good entertainment. I must admit, though, that in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks against the WTC, the reply of William Baldwin's character to a question-that if he ran out of plane fuel, he would `find the sweetest military target and try to kill as many Japanese as possible'- sent chills down my spine because it illustrated how righteous the terrorists must have felt. I suppose the recent events highlight the movie's rudimentary treatment of the philosophical issues and conflicts associated with war, especially if one considers the obvious similarities.
In the end, if you eat this cake to be enlightened by some new insights, you will be disappointed. If you eat it, however, to enjoy it for its own sake, you will.
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