An Empty Fun Feeling: A Review Of War Dogs

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War Dogs is a movie that came out recently and stars Miles Teller and Jonah Hill. Those are two of my favorite actors working in Hollywood right now, so I decided I would watch and review it.

War Dogs was directed by Todd Phillips and its screenplay was written by Steve Chin and Phillips. Phillips is responsible for writing and directing such movies as, The Hangover Trilogy, Due Date, Old School, Starsky & Hutch and Road Trip. He has quite an impressive filmography but it is a filmography that sort of explains some of the problems with this movie. It’s not that I don’t like the movies he has made; it’s just that most of the movies in Phillips’ filmography have more fun than substance.

War Dogs falls into this category of films, it takes a controversial subject like arms dealing and the moral dilemma that come along with it and creates a little bit of a mediocre story. Two characters, down on their luck start gaming the system and become rich, but it affects their personal life and they have to choose between their fortunes and their happiness. It’s just a little clichéd.

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Most of the momentum in the film comes from the relationship between Teller and Hill’s character’s friendship. In the movie, they are old friends who used to get into trouble together in highschool who reunite to form a company to sell weapons to the American military, while skirting the line between legal and illegal. The relationship between the two characters is quite entertaining. The friends seem to be unstable on their own and yet they find stability in each other.

The performances of the two actors (Teller and Hill) are both pretty good. Teller’s performance in this movie seems average, it is just that every time he appears on screen I compared this performance to his performance in Whiplash and it just pales in comparison. Jonah Hill’s performance, while quite good, just feels too reminiscent of his role in The Wolf of Wall Street, the instability and quirkiness just overlap a little too much in the two characters.

The stand out performance in this movie has to be Bradley Cooper’s. In the film Cooper plays this notorious arms dealer Henry Girard. The character is just another world evil and Cooper plays this very subtly, almost so subtly that you don’t notice it. but when he turns it on, like the scene where he expresses his hatred for  America, you really notice.

Overall the movie is very entertaining, but it doesn’t give you anything more than a shallow story about two cowboy-like characters that sell guns. And while that sounds like a lot of fun, it’s a little disappointing when a character has inner conflict about his profession that goes nowhere. Instead of changing his behavior or doing something different, anytime Teller’s character has second thoughts about what he’s doing in the movie Jonah Hill’s character will say something like, “Fuck it, we’re going to be rich!” and Teller thinks, “Yeah, I am going to be rich!” and continues on whatever path he was going down in the first place.

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So while the movie is entertaining and fun but just a little empty of feeling.

Well that’s my review of War Dogs. Let me know if you liked it! Let me know if you hated my review! Leave me a comment! Also please if you liked this review please like it and if you like this blog please follow on WordPress or Facebook.

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