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WWII Flick Recounts Real-Life Ordeal of American POW

 

Unbroken

DVD Review by Kam Williams

WWII Flick Recounts Real-Life Ordeal of American POW

 

Do you remember how, Infamous, a biopic about Truman Capote, was released right on the heels of the one entitled Capote? But because the latter had already received considerable critical acclaim, including an Oscar for the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, the Johnnie-come-lately had little chance of making more than a blip on the radar.

51rHWTr3CMLThe same fate might befall Unbroken, a World War II saga directed by Angelina Jolie. The parallels between this picture and The Railway Man are impossible to ignore, since they both recall the real-life ordeal of a POW tortured by a sadistic, Japanese officer.

The Railway Man, which opened last April, was based on Eric Lomax’s autobiography, and starred the charismatic Colin Firth in the title role opposite Tanroh Ishida as the sick interrogator who seemed to take pleasure in beating him mercilessly. Although Lomax would survive Singapore, he was left traumatized by the grueling ordeal, and ultimately attempted to exorcise his demons by returning to Southeast Asia to track down his abuser.

The correspondingly-themed Unbroken was adapted from the Laura Hillenbrand’s (Seabiscuit) best-seller of the same name recounting bombardier Louie Lamperini’s (Jack O’Connell) struggle to survive a POW camp in Tokyo after his plane crashed in the Pacific during a 11002653_838350802902746_3288899748804653940_nrescue mission. Because he had represented the U.S. in the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, he was singled out for special mistreatment by a cruel prison guard (Takamasa Ishihara). And later in life, he would return to the Orient to try to confront that evil creep who’d singled him out for an extra measure of persecution.

Unbroken, like The Railway Man, even ends with a touching, closing credits photo montage featuring snapshots of both the
hero and his tormentor which only added to this critic’s profound sense of déjà vu. An honorable, historical drama who’s primary flaw rests in its being released in the wake of a more-compelling biopic revolving around similar subject-matter.

An uplifting tribute to the indomitability of the human spirit.

 

Very Good (2.5 stars)

Rated PG-13 for brief profanity and intense brutality

In English, Italian and Japanese with subtitles

Running time: 138 minutes

Distributor: Universal Studios Home Entertainment

Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Extras: Deleted scenes; Inside Unbroken; cast and crew concert featuring Miyavi; Prison Camp Theater: Cinderella; Louis’ Path to Forgiveness; and The Real Louis Zamperini.

 

 

To order Unbroken on Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack, visit:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00HLTDCLM/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

Source:  Baret News Wire

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