War is hell a wise person once said, and in many ways we the general public have no idea what it was like on those battlegrounds where so many sacrificed so much. Fortunately for many of us, the movies have offered a glimpse into the world, opening our eyes to the world that cares little of its soldiers in regards to decency and humane treatment. Many of these films are often about the action, and while not as prominent as they once were back in the day, they still offer some intense views of history. Past this introduction, this weekend, yet another historical remake is flying in to make a landing, in hopes of wowing the group once more with its depiction of the great war. Robbie K here with yet another review as we look into:
Movie: Midway (2019)
The Modern Technology Prowess
Multiple Aspect providing different viewpoints
The Intensity Of Some War Scenes
The Decent Acting
The Intelligence Aspect
Too many Perspectives
The Semi Forced Love Story
The Choppiness of the scenes
Semi-sloppy use of big names
The Action Scenes
Modern technology allows us to make things more realistic and engaging, and should in theory lead to better fights. In a way Midway accomplishes this by bringing the chaos with speaker booming effects, special effects that light up the screen, and dances with planes that once relied on plywood models. It is certainly the selling points of the trailers and should appeal to the modern audiences expectations as realism and style come together. This film though took a different approach compared to the previous theaters of war, not focusing so much on the action from America by itself, but instead dividing the focus between both parties involved. This dynamic is impressive to see because it helps show the strategy involved in something you have only read about in a history textbook, allowing for a different appreciation of the tactics in war. In fact, my favorite aspect, as well as my good buddy, both agreed that seeing the intelligence component involved with determining how to fight the Pacific campaign. Much of the film is dedicated to showing how codes were cracked, departments coordinated, and risks were taken to determine the best places to strike and this new perspective was very strongly placed. When the battles did finally occur, there are several moments where you get pulled into the intensity, feeling like you are part of the squad and in the cockpit during this operation. Nice editing on these parts, and quite an adrenaline rush at the times it works. Finally, the acting is not an issues in this film, as all personalities of war are brought in and everyone executes there roles quite well when they are on stage. I’m not saying Academy Award Level, but it’s believable and appropriate for this film’s approach.
For all its worth though, there are several limitations for this reviewer that make the film a little less impressive compared to its predecessors. For one thing, the film feels disjointed, as our time hops and evolution of war occur a little too frequently to necessarily keep track of everything. All the pesrpectives, while again interesting, also have too much going on, leading to breaking up a lot of scenes just as they start cooking with gas. The result is a rather contained movie that struggles to find the approach it wants, with choppy scenes that sort of scatter the coordination rather than unite it. This is especially true for the romance story they try to put in here, which was unnecessary giving the presentation and could have been left out. Throw in several attempts at character development, the potential bonds that can form between a number of characters, and even the squad mates themselves and you again get sort of piece meal presentations that did not achieve what Pearl Harbor did long ago. Once more, this reviewer feels part of this is due to how many big names they have, trying to get the most out of the big price tags that come with them. Midway’s crew acts just fine, but there were so many missed elements and character interactions that I feel many of these people were unnecessary. Certainly they were able to point out all the contributions they did, but to deny the full fledged chemistry and quality, well that was the disappointment for me. Finally, the action scenes. An action junky like me always crave for cohesive battle scenes that utilize their groups well, something that the early war movies, and even some films like Saving Private Ryan knew how to do. In this one, all the perspectives and heroes were scattered that the action scenes felt again very sloppy and short, chopped up moments that ended too fast or how long it took to start. Again realistically it accomplishes the portrayal, but at this point and with what the trailers built up… I wanted more out of a modern day, technological behemoth like this one looked to be.
Let’s wrap it up then shall we? Midway accomplishes the idea of putting modern faces in traditional stories, and this theater of wars proves that trying new things does not always come together for this reviewer. Sure, the technological advantages are good and all the actors recruited do their parts to bring the group of heroes to life and retell the legacies of men who faced the demons of war. I’ll also again give them props for focusing a lot on the strategy and intelligence required to pull off the miracle that we did. However, all of these perspectives and approaches to the story made for what looked like a difficulty to focus on the story they wanted to tell. The result is again a disjointed movie that struggles to bring A games to any perspective, and relies on B and C graded stories. Your truly would have loved a little more action to come together, as the trailers promised, but at least the intelligence parts work together to make for an engaging plot. For special effects it qualifies for a theater visit, but outside of that, hold this one for home viewing instead.
My scores are:
Movie Overall: 6.0