During the Afghanistan war, several outposts were placed to control the Taliban movement and their supply chain. Camp Keating, situated in a valley surrounded by mountains, was one them. While being shot at by the Talibans was business as usual, they tried to gain respect from local village elders and have them help stop these skirmishes. One day, when 400 Talibans rallied for a surprise attack, it was up to them to leverage the poor defenses and lack of ammo and manpower they had, to ultimately survive and go back to their loved ones.Written by
After the ending credit song starts, the pictures of the KIA soldiers are shown along with a clip of the actor that played every one of them in the movie. After the song ends, there are various clips and interviews with the real soldiers and some of the actors, including two clips from the TV show "An Unlikely Hero" with Ty Carter and some words from him at the very end. See more »
Party Every Day
Written by Brian Irwin (as Brian Hosmer Irwin), Gregory Richard Sweeney
Courtesy of APM Music See more »
An extremely visceral re-telling of a forgotten battle in Aghanistan
PREMISE - The Outpost depicts the battle of Outpost Keating, known as the Battle of Kamdesh, which took place on October 3rd 2009, close to the border with Pakistan in Afghanistan. The Outpost itself was located on the bend of a river in a valley, completely overlooked by high mountains on all sides. It was simply put, a nigntmare to defend and a prime target to over run. So it would be that 300 Taliban fighters would attempt to do just that over two fateful days that October.
In addition to the harsh terrain the location had other issues. Helicopter re-supply was extremely challenging and dangerous and could only be conducted at night (A previous re-supply attempted killed 12 people, not depicted in the movie) meaning only night landings when there was no moon were possible. Due the nature of the base being located effectively in the bottom of a funnel, in-direct fire support from artillary was impossible and the nearest close air-support was thirty minutes away. Into this nightmare scenario 53 American Soldiers were expected to defend the worst position possible, so the stage was set for a modern day Zulu and one of the bloodiest close quarter conflicts of the war in Afghanistan.
THE CAST - Casting here is impressive and suspiciously full of the children and grandchildren of famous actors and directors. (Jagger, Gibson, Eastwood, Attenborough) Knowing full well that it is difficult to often tell men apart in uniform during depictions of conflict on screen, we have an interesting range of faces, the most easy to spot of which is SCOTT EASTWOOD, proving to be every bit his Father's son as Staff Sgt Clint Romesha, he and CALEB LANDRY JONES both give stand out performances but the rest of the cast are solid too, special mentions to: CORY HARDRICT, TAYLOR JOHN SMITH. and the ever dependable JACK KESY. Senior Officers are played by MILO GIBSON (Whose making a good name for himself despite the challenge of having to fill size 22 shoes) and ORLANDO BLOOM, who appears to have come full circle from playing PFC Blackburn in Blackhawk Down to playing Captain Keating here, whom the camp was ultimately named after. A number of younger British actors do incredibly well and even Producer JOHNATHAN YUNGER gets in on the action!
PRODUCTION - The film was predominantly shot in Bulgaria, as you would expect for a film being produced by Millenium Pictures, but the set up for the camp is convincing and adequately conveys the issues facing the defenders, although the depiction of the terrain is slightly different. The first half of the film tells the story of the various officers who were stationed at the camp before leaving the final third of the film to depict the battle. It is here where ex-soldier turned director ROD LURIE and DOP LORENZO SENATORE do a superb job of giving us a balls to the wall depiction of the final assault and place you firmly in the middle of it, making me regret I could not have experienced the sequence on the big screen. Several long takes (all the rage these days) give a very realistic depiction of following one character in the battle, then another. They also employ a clever techique of depicting the deaths of the real personnel involved, seen primarily form the third person, which felt like a sensible and sensitive approach to the issue in question. One of the most dependable sargeants is wounded early on during the firefight which has an impact on the battle morale of the soldiers whom find themselves fighting for their lives minute by minute. Enough screen time is given to depicting the local political problems facing the American officers, who did their best under extremely challenging circumstances to placate locals.
OVERALL - This film is one of the best depictions of close quarter fighting since Blackhawk Down and is extremely well handled. Some of the earlier dialogue between the soldiers lets the film down a little bit. Yes, we know soldiers do talk like this from time to time but some of lines are cringeworthy to say the least and I am sure this dialogue could have easily been improved upon, but minor gripes aside the film is a pretty gripping depiction of a stupid military blunder which cost the lives of several young men, completely unnecessarily. It does seem a shame however, that the release of this film, may have torpedoed a second film on the subject (RED PLATOON) based on the book written by Medal of Honour winner Clinton Romesha (Played by Scott Eastwood) - Eastwood was not able to speak to Romesha when researching the role he depicted due to this conflict which feels a real shame. So it is possible, we might see a second film depicting the battle. Bring it on.
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