Based on the untold true story, we follow the journey of Captain Mitch Nelson (Chris Hemsworth) on the day of 9/11. The event, like it did to so many others, shook him to his core, unleashing a fiery determination within him to return to the war he just left. Nelson, at his own request, is sent into Afghanistan almost straight away, set to lead the first Special Forces team into battle after one of modern America’s greatest tragedies. His team, which includes the likes of Michael Shannon, Trevante Rhodes and Michael Peña, is sent in to team up with an Afghan warlord (Navid Negahban) and take down Taliban soldiers.
It’s a generic, slow paced story that’s light on characterization and unsatisfactory in its payoff. An attempt is made at building up character development and getting you invested in these soldier’s lives, but for all the given screen time, it adds about as much as the single line of dialogue “I have a wife at home,” because that’s literally all they show us about any of these guys. You’re supposed to be taken on some emotional ride into these character’s personal struggles through the war, but when the credits begin to roll, I couldn’t tell you a single one of their names. For the sake of this review I’m merely getting them off of IMDB.
12 Strong is not a fantastic movie, but even then, it’s not remarkably bad either. The runtime may be far too long, but nothing about this film screams with its incompetence. Nicolai Fuglsig makes a solid directorial debut, and some of the more action-heavy sequences are thrilling and intense, but the overall film, despite some decent moments, just fails to wow.
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