Mark Wahlberg stars in this excellent action drama from 2007 about an Afghan war sniper who is sold out by his leadership and withdraws to a cabin in the mountains with his dog to surf the internet in anonymity, pick up the pieces and move on. Of course, that’s when the real action starts. Any resemblance to Solaratov is strictly coincidental. 😉
Based on a Stephen Hunter novel, this movie was written originally for a much older war veteran and sought out Clint Eastwood or Harrison Ford, but the rewrite for Wahlberg actually, in my opinion, made the movie far better and more believable. We really don’t need to see a pudgy, aging Indiana Jones doing any more self-parody in a movie like this. With Wahlberg, the action and skill portrayed are realistic and thoroughly believable, even if the technical details are not perfect. They were good enough for me.
Another aspect of the film that was very satisfying, and fairly unique, was the realistic portrayal of the internal struggle going on in U.S. government agencies, especially now, and especially in law-enforcement and security agencies. In one scene, Michael Pena, a young FBI agent is sternly cautioned about what he should put in his report about what he saw and heard during an assassination man-hunt. He replies: “Maybe I should read the report first and then remember what I saw.”
Another nice feature of the movie is the amazing scenic splendor of British Columbia which appears whenever the story is not unfolding in Philadelphia, Baltimore or Washington, D.C. This location shooting is also good for some chuckles, as with many movies these days shot in Canada, when the Canadian Rockies are passed off as Wyoming or Virginia. That part is just silly, but at least it’s good eye candy. Sorry about the lack of further detail, but it would spoil the movie. See it on DVD or cable if you can. I give it 5 grunts.