World War two is one of the most sought after time periods to set movies in. That is why it is harder every time I see a WW2 film to grade it: It needs to set itself apart from other war films.
That is the only real issue I have with “Fury”: It plays like every other movie about the war. That is not to say it is a bad movie. It just seems like I have seen this before. “Fury” stars Brad Pitt as Don Collier (known as “Wardaddy”) a tank commander in the ending days of the war (April 1945). His squad includes Boyd Swan (Shia Lebouf), the bible reader, Gordo (Michael Pena), and the semi-crazy Grady Travis (Jon Bernthal). The movie mainly revolves around their new recruit Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman), a typist who has been in the army for only 8 weeks.
There are two things that make this movie worth seeing. The first is the action sequences, wonderfully staged by director David Ayer. The movie is violent, of course, and (at a few points) shocking, but it does not go over the top. The second thing is the acting. Brad Pitt plays the role like the dumbed down version of his character in “Inglorious Basterds”. Shia Lebouf does fine work as does Bernthal and Pena, but the real stand out is Lerman. I stated back in 2007’s “3:10 to Yuma” (a very underated film) that he was an actor to look out for. He is known to younger audiences as the title character in the “Percy Jackson” films, and also did excellent work in “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”. I still feel he is one of the most underrated actors we have. He wears the role so well it seems like he is not acting at all. It is wonderful work.
Parents, there is a bit of language (some sexual) and much violence, but not real nudity. I would say High Schoolers and above can see it (or even MATURE middle schoolers).
In the end, the movie was good, but it did go a bit long (the middle scene, while great, did seem to go a bit too long for me). Never the less, the movie is worth seeing if you like great action scenes and great acting, which, now that I think of it, is hard to find in movies these days.
Overall: 3 1/2 Stars ***1/2