Jack O'Connell and Takamasa Ishihara in Unbroken.
Jack O'Connell and Takamasa Ishihara in Unbroken. Universal Pictures

MOVIE REVIEW: Jolie's Unbroken tests the emotions

IT'S amazing how much a true story can tug at the heart strings.

Soon enough we remember just how fortunate we are.

In the case of Unbroken, perspective was well and truly put in place for me.

I can't imagine the feelings of despair and helplessness the thousands of men felt during World War II, particularly those who were captured and sent to prisoner-of-war camps.

For the likes of Olympic athlete Louis Zamperini (played by Jack O'Connell), it was all too real.

After a near-fatal plane crash in World War II, Louis spent a harrowing 47 days in a raft with two fellow crewmen, Phill (Harry Potter's Domhnall Gleeson) and Fitzgerald (Garrett Hedlund), before being caught by the Japanese navy and sent to a prisoner- of-war camp.

Unbroken is a story of courage, determination and rising against adversity in the most admirable and honourable way.

Angelina Jolie does extremely well to bring her audience among the gruelling scenes of warfare.

The words: "If you can take it, you can make it" are uttered often throughout, giving a sense of hope through the challenges Louis endures.

Louis's bravery is both remarkable and admirable and this is despite the depression that sets in with the dark circumstances surrounding him.


Starring: Rockhampton's very own Alex Russell, Jack O'Connell, Domhnall Gleeson, Garrett Hedlund, Jai Courtney, Takamassa Ishihara.

Rated: M

Reviewer: Tamara MacKenzie

Rated: 4 ½ stars out of 5.

No spoilers will be given away in this review, but the moment of truth that occurs near the end of Unbroken will make your heart swell with pride.

It's hard to fault this film for the message it conveys, but perhaps one criticism I could say about this film - and understandably it would have made the film even longer - but I would like to have witnessed a little more of Louis's beginnings, even as a child.

The story suggests that if it were not for his older brother Pete (Alex Russell), believing in him and encouraging him to make the track team, he would have spiralled into a life of crime.

Prior to his Olympic career taking off, Louis was known for stealing and painting milk bottles with white to hide the alcohol he drank.

Perhaps a deeper look into his rebellious behaviour as a child might have added more colour to the story. But then again I understand the constraints of film as opposed to novels.

Watch it for the nostalgia of that era, admire it for the courage Louis portrays, see it for the message it sends. Either way, Unbroken is a must-see for all.

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