Rafe (Ben Affleck) and Danny (Josh Hartnett) grow up like brothers and become pilots together in the U.S. Army Air Corps. Life is laid back and rather easy in the military with girlfriends and the good life, until Rafe is assigned to England to fight in Britain’s Royal Air Force. Meanwhile Danny and Rafe’s girlfriend (Kate Beckinsale), a Navy nurse, are assigned to Hawaii where romantically, things begin to heat up for Danny and Evelyn. Life is full of surprises and changes for everyone on December 7, 1941, the day (as Roosevelt said) will live in infamy.
THE GOOD:…This incredible epic is unlike any war movie you’ve ever seen before, delivering heroism and tragedy that’s real and tangible. It’s a glimpse into our nation’s past capturing the realism of war with historical filmmaking techniques and digital special effects that go emotionally and technically beyond “Saving Private Ryan” – never before has war looked so real! The story delivers a satisfying account of that infamous day in history doing justice to both sides, giving the Japanese’ perspective and reason for war instead of simply painting them as pure evil. Affleck and Hartnett prove they are both leading man material delivering the essence of bravery and heroism in most of the dramatic action and the humanity side of the story that captures our hearts. But directors/producers Michael Bay and Jerry Bruckheimer have likewise assembled a talented cast playing important key roles (Beckinsale, Baldwin, Gooding, JR., Voight, Tom Sizemore) that are emotionally pivotal to the story. From the bullets ricocheting through the water, the huge battleships Oklahoma and Arizona sinking, incredible aerial shots of bombs being dropped and the magnitude of thousands of men (and women) hurt or dying in battle, to personal triumphs like Roosevelt (Voight) proving his manhood to a room full of doubting military leaders by standing from his wheelchair and the first black man (Gooding JR.) honored by the government for his heroism in shooting down two planes. The incredible script by Randall Wallace, gorgeous scenery, wonderful period costumes, stirring musical score by Hans Zimmer and incredible cast make this a spectacular ode to American history that simply shouldn’t be missed by anyone, especially teenagers. I was moved and enthralled with this movie. It is the first serious Oscar contender this year and will undoubtedly be the box office hit of the summer. THE NOT-SO-GOOD:…This is a movie made for adults and mature audiences who can understand and deal with, wartime issues and themes. Anyone who sees it needs to be mature enough to handle these themes as well as the romantic love scene that’s too mature for a young PG-13 crowd.