Directed and co-written by Kimberly Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry, The Last Good Breath), Stop Loss dramatizes the U.S. military’s “stop-loss” policy that allows the military to postpone the honorable discharge of U.S. soldiers and send them back to Iraq and Afghanistan for another tour of duty (usually a year to eighteen months). Alas, Stop Loss proves the adage that “good politics don’t make good art.” Stop Loss suffers from a serious case of implausibility and contrivance that fatally undermines whatever insight Peirce hopes to shed on the stop-loss policy and its unfairness toward the soldiers who serve in the U.S. military in foreign countries.
Sergeant Brandon King (Ryan Phillippe), leads his men, including his best friend, Sergeant Steve Shriver (Channing Tatum), Tommy Burgess (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Isaac ‘Eyeball’ Butler (Rob Brown), Al ‘Preacher’ Colson (Terry Quay), and Rico Rodriguez (Victor Rasuk), down an alley to hunt down suspected terrorists or insurgents in Iraq. Pinned down in an ambush, King loses several men, but saves Shriver and Rodriguez from almost certain death. With his tour of duty almost done, King returns to his small hometown in Texas. There, he receives the Bronze Star for his bravery in saving his men and a Purple Heart for injuries sustained in combat. After celebrating with Shriver, Burgess, Shriver’s fiancÃ©, Michelle (Abbie Cornish), his parents, Ida (Linda Emond) and Roy (CiarÃ¡n Hinds), King returns to the army base for debriefing.
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MTV’s Movie Blog has posted the official one sheet for their satellite film branch’s Iraq War drama Stop-Loss. Starring Ryan Phillipe, Timothy Olyphant and Abbie Cornish, the film is also notable for lead roles played by Brick‘s Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Channing Tatum. One wonders if the movie will end up being remembered more for starring two guys from G.I. Joe (Gordon-Levitt is confirmed, Tatum is rumored) rather than for making an important statement about the struggles of modern day U.S. soldiers.
Back in October, we posted the trailer, which has the unfortunate soundtrack of Drowning Pool’s “Bodies (Hit the Floor),” but offers a new angle compared to recent war films: that of a young solider refusing a “stop-loss,” a real-life mandate that suddenly orders a soldier to once again return to battle after completing required deployments. Think of it like being told “no summer break” when you were in high school and multiply it times an inferno.
While the film, set for March 28, is directed by Boys Don’t Cry‘s respected Kimberly Peirce, the poster shares far too much similarity with MTV’s 1999 teen football-and-hormones drama Varsity Blues. Compare the two after the jump.
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MTV has the trailer premiere for Kimberly Peirce’s Stop-Loss. Ryan Phillippe returns to Texas after a tour in Iraq, but when he is ordered to return for another tour of duty, he refuses. The film co-stars Channing Tatum, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Timothy Olyphant and Abbie Cornish.
While the America seems to be getting sick of the “Iraq War” series of movies, this one somehow seems more poignant than most.
Peirce’s last film, 1999′s Boys Don’t Cry was critically acclaimed, and even won an Academy Award for star Hilary Swank. Check out the trailer after the jump.
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Kimberly Peirce, Darren Aronofsky, David O. Russell, Spike Jonze, David Fincher, Baz Luhrmann and Mark Romanek were supposed to be the next generation of filmmakers. What happened?
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