Unbroken is based on the bestselling book by Laura Hillenbrand and is directed by Angelina Jolie. It tells the true life survival story of Olympic runner and soldier Louis Zamperini during WWII. After his plane crashes into the ocean, Louis embarks on an extraordinary journey of survival, as his will is tested.
Louis Zamperini (Jack O’Connell) is a young Italian-American growing up on the wrong side of the tracks, until he begins running for his local school team. As he progresses as a runner, Louis soon finds himself running for the United States of America at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Germany. Afterwards, he enlists in the army as bombardier.
On a mission, his plane falls apart and the crew make an emergency landing in the ocean, leaving only three soldiers alive on a raft: Louis, Phil (Domhnall Gleeson) and Mac (Finn Wittrock). The soldiers deal with sharks, mother nature and a plane shooting at them as they drift for 47 days on the water. In their final hours the two left alive are rescued by the Japanese army and held as prisoners.
Sent to a Prisoner of War (POW) camp, they come face to face with chief commander Mutsuhiro “The Bird” Watanabe. Louis recognizes Mutsuhiro from the Olympic opening ceremonies, when they each exchanged a friendly head nod. Mutushiro takes great pride in torturing, humiliating and trying to break Louis.
Unbroken is a great journey, showing what men did in order to survive the brutal camp. It’s inspirational to watch Louis, who never gives up. Even when knocked down and bloodied, he always shows determination and an unwillingness to give up.
On the other hand we have Mutsuhiro, who has to show he is in control and has his power tested by Louis. As they interact, we see two soldiers who will do what it takes to best each other.
Overall I really enjoyed this film, although there were some parts that dragged and a few shots that seemed out of place. Also this film was not as Americanized as American Sniper, it was just about a man fighting for his life. Kudos to Angelina Jolie for this film, I really thought this was worth an Oscar nod for how well the story was told and shown.
One side note was that this film had some of the most realistic shark scenes I’ve ever seen since the movie Jaws, which is saying a lot about Hollywood. I recommend this film for anyone who enjoys survival, war, and redemption movies. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
The Blu-ray features for Unbroken include Deleted Scenes, Inside Unbroken, Prison Camp Theater: Cinderella, Cast and Crew Concert Featuring Miyavi, Louis’ Path to Forgiveness and The Real Louis Zamperini.
To watch trailers for these movies, click each link below: