Patriots Day

(2016)

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Title:
Patriots Day
Release Date:
21st December 2016
Runtime:
130 min
MPAA Rating:
R
Genres:
Directors:
Peter Berg
Writers:
Matt Cook, Peter Berg
Languages:
English
Stream Quality:
1080p / 720p / 480p

Storyline

On April 15, 2013 Boston, Massachusetts, Police Sgt, Tommy Saunders is pulling security duty on the annual Boston Marathon when the Tsarnaev brothers strike with their homemade bombs in an act of terrorism. In the resulting chaos as the wounded are cared for, Saunders and his comrades join forces with the FBI to get to the bottom of this attack. As the investigation continues, the Tsarnaev brothers realize that the authorities are close to identifying them and attempt to flee the city to continue their fanatical mayhem. To stop them, a police manhunt is performed that would have bloody confrontations and a massive dragnet shutting down the City of Boston to make sure there is no escape from the law.

Ratings

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 78%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience 90%
IMDb Rating 7.6

Casts

Dicky Eklund Jr. as Young Police Officers
John Goodman as Commissioner Ed Davis
Mark Wahlberg as Tommy Saunders
Michael Marchand as Young Police Officers
Rhet Kidd as Harrold

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by mike david 14th January, 2017

A Mixed Bag- Entertaining and Compelling, but Disappoints Overall

This movie comes out at awards season as an apparent surprise contender for the Oscars. It certainly had the source material and some substance to work with. So I went in hoping to be a believer. This is a movie that gets mixed reviews: it's both good and bad. The good is the fine direction and staging of the events that occurred. They were done with keen attention to detail and impressive accuracy to how the events transpired. Therefore, it makes for an effective action movie and thriller. It also does an effective job holding your attention, building suspense, and feeling for the unfortunate victims of the tragedy and carnage that occurred. But the film falls short of greatness and even short of being anything special for the genre, a genre that most recently includes much better films like Zero Dark Thirty. These are basically recent manhunt movies for terrorists in events that only took place within three to five years ago before their release. Other examples are United 93 and to some extent, World Trade Center. So don't go in expecting a masterpiece or anything mind blowing. However, it is a decent movie. It does many things right but also many wrong. While it was nice to acknowledge the pride for the Boston PD and LE heroes involved in succeeding in solving the case, that alone isn't enough to make a movie great, obviously due to technicalities and all the other filmmaking aspects. Wahlberg, while a likable guy trying his best, sort of was a distraction and not well cast as an imaginary Boston cop who was there that day and helped investigate the case. He's "okay" in the role, but a better character actor wouldn't have been as much of a distraction and probably more believable. Then there's the long drawn out real life interviews at the end. There's a few movies with these this year, but they only show a handful of real life clips or summaries of "what happened to...". This one has several minutes of real life interviews and interviewees, from survivors to police officers to politicians and others involved, and it's just all over the place. It came off as amateur overall even though it was nice to hear from the survivors. It was just way too long and awkward for a feature film. Last but not least, while realism was one of the film's biggest strengths as far as how events happened and their staging, including accurate depictions and casting for the Tsarnaev brothers and streets of Watertown the final showdown took place, I was hoping that if they went as far as to create a fictitious character in Wahlberg that they also might be bold and daring enough to tie in an alternative ending for Tamerlan; on the night it happened, live news video showed a naked handcuffed young man being escorted by LE and the reporter claimed that was the suspect and he was in custody (you can even look it up on YouTube- it looks identical to him), and an outside observer can put 2 and 2 together and at least picture and theorize that the PD killed him. Instead, they went with the recorded story that Dzokhar, his brother, ran him over. Of course it would have been controversial and might have led to possible backlash from many arenas, but that would have been compelling. Like I said, if they're going to make up a main character, why not add a surprise twist that may have very well happened according to video footage of the news to people who watched that night. Instead, it came off just a tad predictable. Overall, though, it was a pretty decent movie. 5/10

Reviewed by sunraider 14th January, 2017

Mediocre By-the-Numbers Tale

Patriot's Day is a a fairly routine by-the-numbers drama about the Boston Marathon bombings and the hunt for the two brothers. Unfortunately, instead of a docudrama giving us an inside look at the important political and LE players and the decisions made, the film focuses on Whalberg's fictional, composite character and he drags the movie down. Whalberg's "Tommy Saunders" is a fairly unlikable character. He's facing suspension, has a bad attitude, and hobbles around on an injured leg. Every time he came on screen the film lost momentum as it took the focus away from the really important decision makers. The film's run-time definitely seems padded with unnecessary scenes showing us the victims' mundane lives before the bombings and the domestic bliss and/or squabbles of the fictional Tommy Saunders and other law enforcement. There were only two sequences in the film that I found gripping. One was the carjacking/kidnapping and eventual escape by the Chinese man. I didn't recall that part of the event and I was genuinely concerned for and cared about the young man. The other sequence that stood out was the interrogation of the wife. It was dramatically underplayed and the tension was palpable. The film would have been better served had it concentrated on these types of realistic scenes and simply cast top-quality character actors instead of a top star that required extensive time in front of the camera. Love Mark Whalberg but he was totally unnecessary and actually a hindrance in this movie.

Reviewed by A_Different_Drummer 13th January, 2017

Writer/Director Peter Berg Takes Police Work to the next Level

PPs (police procedurals) are a staple of the film/TV industry and are (believe it or not) as common as comedies or romcoms. However, within that category, "big" PPs based on big crimes are not that common. In fact, you would have to go back to the early 70s when a number of "big PPs" like Day of the Jackal 1973 were all the rage. So, a film like this done properly (and, trust me, this one is done perfectly) would be a treat all by itself. However, what makes this film extra-special is the extensive use of video footage. Now, to be clear, video footage as a plot device is not new by itself. It is now, and has been used extensively in British film and TV because, as we all know, London is the most "surveyed" city on the planet. But -- the point -- nothing the Brits have ever done with the forensic use of video comes even close to what Berg brings us in this excellent film. Much the same way that the original creators of CSI-Vegas introduced an entirely new sort of sub-genre, it can be argued that Patriots Day similarly has taken the police procedural to an entirely new level. The film itself? Brilliant! Berg has taken a stellar group of A-listers and make them work as a team, mirroring on the subliminal level the theme of the movie, which is both positive, and hopeful, and suggests that if we all work together, we can accomplish pretty much anything.

Reviewed by jc-999-591106 12th January, 2017

Surprisingly Moving

I saw this movie at a preview showing and was very pleasantly surprised. The movie is great, the cast are uniformly excellent, and the plot moves along really nicely. I was mesmerized throughout, the pacing was excellent and, even though we all remember the outcome from the extensive news coverage, I was surprised at some of the things that happened before the end. It was surprisingly moving at a few points, sorry, no spoilers so I won't say any more. Great job to everyone who worked on this movie.

Reviewed by David Ferguson ([email protected]) 12th January, 2017

spirit

Greetings again from the darkness. Is it too soon? If not, is it too painful to revisit? Even if the time is right, is injecting a fictitious supercop into the horrific events an acceptable approach? Every viewer of the film will have their own answers to these questions, but clearly writer/director Peter Berg (Deepwater Horizon, Lone Survivor) and Boston area native Mark Wahlberg believed now is the time and that this is the best way to re-create this catastrophe and its fallout. Wahlberg plays Tommy Saunders, a Boston detective kicked back to uniform duty as penance for a run-in with another cop. His character is evidently a composite of multiple cops and first responders, and though he is the center of the film, the character is the weak link. He's some type of supercop who never sleeps and manages to be literally everywhere something is happening … either the Boston Marathon finish line, FBI control center, the hospital interviewing survivors, or cruising the streets with his spotlight tracking down the bad guys. Beyond Wahlberg's character, the film does a remarkable job at re-creating the tragic events, the emotional and physical fallout, and the urgent law enforcement manhunt. Since it's been less than 4 years, most every piece of this is fresh in our minds. We follow along from when the street cameras are used to identify the suspects all the way through the final capture from the backyard boat. Another thing the film does well is tell the stories of certain individuals who were impacted. We experience the emotions of Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis (John Goodman), the preparedness and cool of Watertown Police Chief Jeffrey Pugliese (JK Simmons), the highs and lows of MIT Officer Sean Collier (Jake Picking), the terror and courage of captive Dun Meng (Jimmy O Yang), and the focus and conflicts of Governor Deval Patrick (Michael Beach) and FBI Special Agent Richard DesLauriers (Kevin Bacon). There is also the story of survivors Jessica Kensky (Rachel Brosnahan) and Christopher O'Shea (Patrick Downes), and a few others who we get to know a little bit. The bombers/terrorists/brothers are played by Alex Wolff and Themo Melikidze, and no effort is made to sympathize or explain their actions. The closest we get is an argument in the apartment with the wife (played by Melissa Benoist) over the wrong type of milk. I will not use the real names here as I don't believe in providing any publicity for such creators of evil. The film successfully establishes the "normal" start to what seemed to be a "normal" day. Of course, April 13 2013 turned out to be anything but. We hear the Newtown tribute at the opening of the race, and we see David Ortiz with his color proclamation at Fenway Park. The music by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross is always spot on with the mood, and the last 10 minutes are by far the most emotional … we hear from the real life survivors, first responders and others so crucial to that time. I may believe that this story would best be told in documentary form, but there is no denying that it's a reminder of the power of love, and the spirit of Boston and America.