Release Date: December 27, 2013 (limited)/ January 10, 2014 (wide)
Director: Peter Berg
Writer: Peter Berg
Friday Night Lights is one of my favorite sports movies. To a lesser extent, I really enjoyed the show. You can read my review of it here. I also want to say up front that 2007’s The Kingdom is also a phenomenal movie.
What do Friday Night Lights and The Kingdom have in common? They were both directed by Peter Berg. They are two very strong movies that led to him affixing himself on my radar.
So you can imagine my utter disappointed when I found out he was directing, of all things, Battleship. It didn’t make any sense to me. The finished product was a movie that, with the right amount of alcohol, was kind of fun to watch the one time. It was something I didn’t think I’d see from a Peter Berg movie after some of his other work.
While researching this week’s Trailer Tuesday, something suddenly clicked. According to this Deadline article, Universal told Berg that in order to direct his adaptation of the true story of a failed 2005 Navy SEAL mission targeting a high ranking member of the Taliban, he had to give them Battleship first.
Now that he has delivered Battleship, he gets to make BEARDS: THE MOVIE!
I mean Lone Survivor.
Lone Survivor tells the aforementioned story of the failed op in 2005 with a stellar cast. Seriously, we have Ben Foster, Eric Bana, Emile Hirsch, Mark Wahlberg and Taylor Kitsch. I am quite a Taylor Kitsch apologist. He had a bad string of movies last year and, honestly, he seems more of an action star than a legitimate actor.
But there was something about his performance in Friday Night Lights that makes me want to just root for him. His arc in the series followed a trajectory that took the viewer from tolerating a bland character in the beginning to watching the show specifically for Tim Riggins by the final season. He was great and I hope he can replicate that on the big screen some day, perhaps with Lone Survivor.
Judging from this movie’s release date, it appears that Universal hopes to get it a late entry into the Oscar race. The trailer makes it look fairly promising, if a bit overly patriotic. You can view the trailer below and judge for yourself.
You can also buy the book on Amazon by clicking the image below.