“The Hurt Locker” is the story of a military bomb squad in Iraq. That bomb squad is Sgt. William James. With 800+ defused bombs to his credit, Sgt. James is no doubt the best at what he does, and he’s not afraid to let anyone know it. Thing is, James is good at that one thing, and only that one thing. If there’s not a detonator attached, James can’t relate.
Though it appears to be an action movie on the surface, “The Hurt Locker” is more of a tragedy at heart. There are some tense moments (to be expected in a movie about defusing explosives) but it’s more a movie about a soldier, not the war. At first I hated Sgt. James for being a cocky redneck who feels he’s above command. By the end of the film, I pitied him for his empty bombed-out shell of a life.
It’s a very good movie, and I congratulate Kathryn Bigelow for her Oscar wins, but I don’t know if she deserved them over some others. She didn’t up the ante like Cameron or assemble a complex pseudo-history like Tarantino. But she did open the door for female directors to come. Brava!