Film of the day: Fury

Brad Pitt as Wardaddy in Fury

Fury is a war film – a Second World War film, and a good one at that, but it is also an odyssey with inevitable clichés.

Brad Pitt plays the commander of a tank crew that knows it is hopelessly outgunned in any encounter with German armour as they drive deeper into Germany in spring 1945. Pitt’s character is Wardaddy, a respected veteran who has been in combat since landing in North Africa in 1942. He appears to be the polar opposite of the crew’s newest arrival, a green, sensitive, non-combatant clerk named Norman (Logan Lerman), but the teak-tough exterior is a veneer layered thick through years spent in the company of death. Pitt delivers an excellent performance throughout as a man brutalised by conflict who is able to show glimpses of his humanity but equally able to bring out his savagery.

Ultimately, this is a film about camaraderie and the bonds that form between men in war; the cramped claustrophobic scenes within the tank are as awful as they are exciting, and the combat scenes are the equal of anything Spielberg created for Saving Private Ryan. However, Fury also challenges the guilt-free, media-fed view of modern warfare – in this conflict, the firepower is devastating, and the combat deadly and cleverly illustrates that behind every trigger, there is a scared and conflicted human being.

Also stars Michael Pena, Jon Bernthal, Shia LaBeouf

Fury – Friday 9.00pm on Channel 5

Photo by Giles Keyte – © 2014 CTMG, Inc. All Rights Reserved.