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Jarhead (2005)

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Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Director Sam Mendes Rating:8.0/10 (4 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by The Cubist on March 6th, 2006:Find all reviews by The Cubist
Mendes praises Jake Gyllenhaal’s willingness and desire to push himself to his absolute limit whenever possible. The director didn’t want to overthink the camerawork or go for the meticulously staged compositions of his previous movies and instead opted for a looser look with extensive hand-held camerawork. This is a very strong track as he defends his choices and tells all kinds of good anecdotes.
Reviewed by Buldrebisk on April 10th, 2009:Find all reviews by Buldrebisk
Okay movie, okay commentary. Sam talks very directly about everything, very scene specific, and talks about how that scene is different from the book, what day of shooting it was and whether or not it was improvised. Which is something he says every single time something is improvised, which is a lot, but he mentions it for every single word that is different from the script, which is very annoying. I felt he took the task of commentary too serious, which for him resulted in a mediocre and boring commentary. 5/10
Reviewed by iwantmytvm on December 6th, 2021:Find all reviews by iwantmytvm
This commentary is much more about the acting experience and the creation of the story. Mendes touches sparingly on technical aspects, pointing out how locations, sets and special effects were incorporated and blended to construct the film. As noted by another reviewer, Mendes does remark a fair amount about improvisation but his background was directing theatre, so this was to be expected. He also observes elements that were cut or augmented from the source book to round out the film. He explains the use of other war films in this one, and reveals that Jarhead was meant to have an ambivalent stance about the 2000s war in Iraq. The film was meant to focus on Desert Storm / Shield but, of course, the subsequent conflict had its influence upon this film.
Commentary 2: Screenwriter William Broyles and author Anthony Swofford Rating:9.0/10 (3 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by The Cubist on March 6th, 2006:Find all reviews by The Cubist
Broyles served in the Vietnam War and so these two war veterans talk with absolute authority about the authenticity of this movie. They try to explain what it means to be a Marine and go into great detail about what their experiences were like. Naturally, they talk about the differences between the book and the film. It’s great to listen to them talk as they’ve been through what we are watching.
Reviewed by Buldrebisk on April 12th, 2009:Find all reviews by Buldrebisk
This track was better. Both of these guys are experienced in war, and that fact alone gives this track a much higher degree of authenticity. They talk about their experiences and how that is translated to the screen. Much more interesting than the other track. 8/10