FBMR - U-571
Film-Buff Movie Reviews

U-571 (2000) ***

Non-stop suspense is the best way to describe this movie. It's very intense, with lots of suspense (a very few women, I might add). The film tells the story of some of the special operations that the Allied forces performed to try to gain the edge in WWII. The mission here was to pose as Nazis and board an enemy U-boat, steal the Nazi enigma and secret code book, disable Nazi communications, and return to their own submarine. With the code book and enigma, and keeping the fact that they have possession of these from Nazi headquarters, the Allied forces would be able to eavesdrop and know what the next Nazi moves would be, granting the Allies the upper hand. Unfortunately, on their way back to their submarine, after transferring the Nazis from the U-boat to their sub as prisoners-of-war, the American sub blows up, forcing the Americans to return to the German U-boat. From there, it's one predicament after another, each one becoming more and more dangerous. Like I said, it's very intense.

One of my only disappointments is that the writers could have done much more with this premise. Allies trapped on an enemy sub trying to survive. I found that the surface was only scratched. It wasn't totally original, but it was a nice change from the run-of-the-mill war flick. The acting was great, strong performances across the board, except for Bon Jovi. He was just all right, he seemed out of place as a military man. Maybe it was his bad hair cut. Matthew McConaughey was very solid and commanding, and Harvey Keitel played down, with you don't see him do that often. His characters usually tend to dominate, but in this film his character didn't overpower the others, but was still very present. He played the veteran among a crew of rookies very well. I also really liked the underwater shots, and the underwater explosions. The effects were also very realistic. Although, where were all the fish and whales? Another factor I liked was that it wasn't overly patriotic and "American". They fought for theirs and all the countries of the Allied forces.

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