Don ‘Wardaddy’ Collier (Brad Pitt) is a battle-hardened sergeant commanding a crew of five who have to take their Sherman tank deep into enemy lines. We see them mow down Germans, take on other tanks and clear villages. The one thing we don’t see is Brad Pitt’s hair out of place. Even when he has two grenades blow up in his face.
The story begins with Wardaddy’s crew losing one member of the team who is replaced with typist Norman Ellison, a young kid with no history of working on the front line. Instead, as typically the case, he doesn’t want to kill anyone even if they are Germans who want to kill him. It is Wardaddy’s job to make him war hardened and ready to fight if his team is to survive. Queue typical scene of him having a gun shoved in his hand and forced to shoot a P.O.W.
As the film progresses Norman gels with the crew and see’s first hand the brutality of war, from kids being used as soldiers to Germans who weren’t willing to fight hanging from poles in the street. It isn’t just the Germans though painted negatively, we also see the Americans executing prisoners, taking advantage of habitants and their homes, and throwing guns in everyone’s faces.
David Ayers film is brutal, as nothing is off limits, from an elderly gentle being sniped, close-ups of bodies being run over, to heads exploding as they are shot by heavy gunfire. The film tries to paint war as an awful experience that destroys everyones soul, even if they are churchgoers like Norman. The only problem is that as it does all this, we see Brad Pitt getting his six pack out for the sheer fun of it, which reminds you this a movie that is trying to be as serious as Saving Private Ryan but doesn’t have the credibility.
Still though, Fury is a great war film with a finale that is a mash-up of Black Hawk Down’s epic standoff, and a Star Wars light show as green and blue tracer rounds fly all over the place. The only problem is it ends on a massively convenient finale.