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BigSPEEGS Goes to the Movies
Pearl Harbor

BigSPEEGS rates this film:



Think back, if you can, to the cowardly attacks on the World Trade Center in September. Now imagine a big name director coming to New York to film a movie taking place on September 11. He tells you the plot will revolve around two lovers who work in the World Trade Center. One had the day off on September 11. She eventually gets involved with another man, thinking that her original lover was dead. But miraculously, he comes back to life and gets angry at her for being with another man, and. The director calls this brilliant. He tells you it will be an incredible epic, with special effects that will knock your socks off. You take a look at the script, and the best line of dialouge he came up with was "I think World War III just started!" The director also seems keen on making Islam seem like evil, which to you is incredibly offensive.

Hopefully this will put into perspective the perfectly awful time I had watching the three-hour "Pearl Harbor". Advertisements for Jerry Bruckheimer and Michael Bay's film say "EXPERIENCE THE EVENT THAT CHANGED THE WORLD". Indeed, the attack on Pearl Harbor did change the world. It was the loss of American innocence, brought about the atom bomb, and turned America into a force to be reckoned with. But trust me, one will not find much truth in "Pearl Harbor", and the experience that is offered is a stolid one.

"Pearl Harbor" is all too reminiscent of James Cameron's "Titanic". Star-crossed lovers, amazing special effects, epic scope. I'd say this film has it all, but that might end up in an ad somewhere. The plot is dull and unimaginative. I won't even bother giving a plot synopsis, for the film is not unlike the fantasy one described above. No one seems keen on making their characters seem real; each character has a string of melodramatic monologues in place of emotion. The special effects are something else, but it seems that Bruckheimer and Bay forgot a crucial aspect of making a movie: the story comes first. This is a prime example of an overblown, glitzy Hollywood blockbuster.

Something that distresses me about "Pearl Harbor" is it's incredible ignorance of the facts. History is twisted around in such a way that it made me wince. It seems that what really happened on that day of infamy is of no consequence unless it is dramatically convenient. In one scene, FDR is told that an idea of his is impossible. To show them they are wrong, he struggles to stand up out of his wheelchair. I am positive that the real FDR would never do this. He was very private about his illness, only a very select people knew about it. Another thing is the treatment of the Japanese in this film. Yes, some of them do talk about the horrors of war, but the ominous music and warped acting give out the message: "we are the enemies". Bay is trying to be fair, but it comes off as him wanting the Japanese to look like comic book villains.

With "Pearl Harbor", Bruckeimer and Bay stole three hours of my life. Those are three hours I'll never be able to have back. "Pearl Harbor" is a simple-minded popcorn movie (sad that it has to be classified as that, isn't it?). Some critics say, "Hey, it's a Hollywood Popcorn Flick, cut it some slack." Yeah, of course. I should've known that Bay and Bruckheimer were too busy worrying about special effects and promotional tie-ins to worry about story. Silly me. "Pearl Harbor" isn't just boring and poorly written, but the amount of disrespect shown is absolutely shocking.



Ben Affleck .... Captain Rafe McCawley
Josh Hartnett .... Captain Daniel 'Danny' Walker
Kate Beckinsale .... Lieutenant Evelyn Stewart
Ewen Bremner .... Red Winkle
Jon Voight .... President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
William Lee Scott .... Billy the Kid
James King (IV) .... Nurse Betty
Greg Zola .... Anthony Fusco
Alec Baldwin .... Lt. Colonel James H. 'Jimmy' Doolittle
Michael Shannon (V) .... Gooz
Cuba Gooding Jr. .... Doris Miller instead of Dorie Miller
Jennifer Garner .... Nurse Sandra
Catherine Kellner .... Nurse Barbara
Mako .... Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto
Tom Sizemore .... Sergeant Earl Sistern

Running Time: 182 minutes

"Pearl Harbor" is rated PG-13 for sustained intense war sequences, images of wounded, brief sensuality and some language.

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