The first time i watched this film, i thought it was good but not great. The second time i watched it i thought that it was superb. In its own way it is one of the most powerful conflict films i have ever seen, simply because there is no real fighting in it. The film tells tje story of a group of american scout snipers who are sent off to the persian gulf in the first gulf war, each one dreaming of killing hundreds of enemy soldiers and getting "a whole world a pussy." However the reality of it is that they go through grueling training and do little more than sit in a camp and patrol the empty desert. Jake Gylanhaal is very strong as Anthony Swaffard, the main character. The film also stars Jamie Foxx, as a tough but fair Staff Sergeant. The director Sam Mendes has done himself credit, he stated that he thought the film would be his most misunderstood motion picture, and it is easy to see why. The film features some great cinematography as well, with wide shots displaying the burning oil wells, or the entire US Army convoy moving through the desert. The cast are strong and work well together, with Chris Cooper probably being the biggest name in the film, despite his relativly small role.
I would strongly recomend this film to a viewer who enjoys war films, but anyone can watch it and take something away from it. Not suitably for younger audiences due to lots of bad language and sex refrences.