The Hurt Locker: Iraq, With Thrills

The tense Baghdad thriller The Hurt Locker earns its stripes as a great war film

U.S. soldiers heading to Iraq, especially before the 2007 surge, had little to look forward to. Just the 130° heat and streets full of men, women and kids, any one of whom could detonate an improvised explosive device (IED) and blow a street and all its people, American and Iraqi, to bits. In this hell-storm, what's left for an ordinary soldier to do? His job.

American movies took ages to address Iraq and its satellite wars, and then tended to point fingers at the military. Documentaries said that soldiers were bred to be mindless killers (The Ground Truth) and then discarded...

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