You know what you do on Friday nights when you're not drinking? You go to AA meetings or learn to knit. No, no, fuck that, you stay in and watch movies. So Friday night we watched "The Hurt Locker" because, you know, it's highly acclaimed and all that shit.
Now, I'm obviously going to look like an idiot casting any doubt on a movie that got a 97% approval rating on RottenTomatoes and just won the Critics' Choice Award for Best Picture, but I am kind of an idiot, so here goes.
(Side note: at least "Avatar" didn't win. If that wins the Oscar for Best Picture I am really going to get pissed off.)
First of all, Jeremy Renner is fucking phenomenal as the bomb disposal guy, so let's get that out of the way. And the movie totally has you in its grip from the opening sequence and it never fucking lets up. It's like standing on the edge of a cliff and waving your arms scrambling trying to get back for 2 hours.
Here comes me being an idiot. I just thought it was a little, I don't know, shallow. I mean, the Renner character veers close to cliche - a bomb defusing guy who's kind of crazy and maybe has a death wish!!! Maybe all bomb defusing guys really are like that, but it just seemed a little predictable. And the fact is that this is really an action flick - it jumps from one highly-charged white-knuckle action sequence to another. There's a nod towards character depth with a whole subplot about the Bomb Guy developing a relationship with an Iraqi boy, but ultimately we don't learn a lot about Bomb Guy as a result.
Don't get me wrong; it's a powerful, gripping movie that never lets up and absolutely keeps you riveted for 2 hours. But it's essentially an action thriller. I'll be fine if it wins Best Picture, as long as Avatar doesn't, but I don't see it as this Amazing Achievement in Cinema. I'm no film critic, though, so what do I know.