Billy Lynn’s Long Half Time Walk has wonderful cinematography and is the latest film directed by two-time Oscar Winner Ang Lee.
The film is shown through the eyes of 19 year old army Specialist Billy Lynn (played by newcomer Joe Alwyn).
Lynn is part of an eight-man unit called the Bravo Squad who are involved in a brief but intense battle in Iraq in which the squad’s Sergeant (played by Vin Diesel) is killed despite Lynn’s attempt to save him.
The battle is captured on film by an embedded news crew and Lynn is hailed as a war hero and awarded the Silver Star for bravery.
The surviving members of the Bravo Squad return to the U.S. and are sent on a two-week nationwide “Victory Tour” by the Government to invoke support for the war.
The culmination of the Victory Tour is Bravo Squad’s invitation to attend the Dallas Cowboy’s Thanksgiving game as the team’s guests and to make an appearance during the halftime show with Destiny’s Child.
The film focuses on the Dallas Cowboy’s game day and uses flashbacks to battle scenes from Iraq with great effect. The filmmaker ably displays the emotional conflict that Lynn is trying to cope with and how he and his squad mates are struggling to acclimatize to life away from the war zone.
A strong cast (including Steve Martin, Chris Tucker and Garrett Hedlund) play their parts well. There are show stealing scenes between Lynn and his sister Kathryn (played by Kristen Stewart). Kathryn is recovering from a series of operations resulting from a car accident and she desperately doesn’t want Billy to return to Iraq.
This is a film full of emotional conflict that is both thought-provoking and powerful and well worth watching.
Words by Peter Lamont
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Details: Billy Lynn’s Long Half Time Walk | 113 minutes | released 24 November 2016