Movies like “Fury” are necessary. For a few brief moments, they remind us of the horrors of war. Let’s face it, it is too easy for national politicians to send our children to war without totally understanding the social and societal impacts.
For 2-plus hours, “Fury” shows us the horror of war. To quote Civil War general William Tecumsah Sherman, “War is hell.” And this movie succeeds in demonstrating that point. “Fury” has all kinds of ugly scenes including a tank’s tread merging a corpse into the mud, a old woman cutting meat off a dead horse, a soldier on fire committing suicide, bodies blown apart, Germans hanging individuals who refuse to continue the fight. You get the point. The cinematography in this movie is incredible, unrelenting, and brutal.
Brad Pitt plays a battle-scared Sherman tank commander who is short on words, sometimes thoughtful, but more often just callously brutal. At the start of the movie, the backup tank driver is killed and replaced by a new naive recruit–trained in typing. To a large degree the movie is his, and as he gets “schooled” in the art of war and survival.
My biggest problem with the movie is the last hour. The Sherman tank and its crew are alone and disabled. They have a mission: stop an enemy advance. The Americans are heroic and the Germans are portrayed as being stupid. They commit hundreds of men and equipment to take out one disabled tank. I don’t know anything about war strategy, but this seems totally insane.
Anyway, if you are an adult or a young adult, go see or rent “Fury.” It will help you better understand the real price of war. If you are a national politician, go see this movie 100 times. And don’t vote for war unless you are prepared to send your children or grandchildren into battle.
Movies take us to place where we are unable to go. Sometimes to places that we don’t want to go, but need to go anyway.