Movie Review: Lebanon (2009)

Lebanonby Brad Nelson   4/3/14
What do guys talk about when they are together with other guys? They talk about women, sports, and guns. Whatever the age, it will be one of those three things. And it just so happened that the conversation the other day was about guns — tanks, specifically.

That talk led to speculation about the best tank movies ever and which one to perhaps watch next. So I went out and saw what I could find. Certainly Band of Brothers has some good tank footage, as does Kelly’s Heroes. Sahara, with Humphrey Bogart, was another option.

Patton has a couple of good tank sequences, but it’s hardly a tank movie. The Battle of the Bulge was another decent possible choice. The Beast is a highly-rated tank film as well.

I’d seen all of these. Surely, I thought (and don’t call me Shirley), there are a couple of great tank movies that I’d just never heard of. So with a little bit of Googling, I stumbled upon this Israel film which had won a couple awards. And it’s got a good schtick: The entire film is shown from the perspective of those inside the tank. Sounds good.

And I should have just let this film remain a good idea because, in practice, it was a wreck.

My general impression is that this was a film made by libtards — and Israel has no shortage of them. They may be as socialistic as Sweden, Benjamin Netanyahu notwithstanding. The Israeli tank crew is shown to be throughly unprofessional, dirty, disorganized, undisciplined, and sometimes downright mutinous.

And when they’re not pissing (I’m not making this up), they’re crying for their mothers. The Muslim Syrian prisoner that they eventually capture is, of course, a victim, and the Phalangist (a Lebanese Christian, an ally of the Jews) is, of course again, yet another deranged Christian.

This movie strives for realism but by no means is it a Mel Gibsonish We Were Soldiers type of realism. It looks more like a liberal’s conception of a war movie. Although any particular war may be justified or not — and, of course, it will be inherently violent and tragic — there is not even the attempt in this movie to show the noble life of those trying to protect their family and country from barbarians. Instead, you’re left with the impression that war never solves anything, that the Israeli soldiers are all reluctant soldiers, and that the true story of war is that we just never bother trying to find the humanity of our enemies — all of which are common libtard themes.

Needless to say, I still had great fun watching this with my brother. Bad movies can be salvaged with a little Mystery Science Theatre 3000 treatment, which we did. And it didn’t take a lot of imagination. The comedy was lubricated, in part, because the tank commander (the head cry-baby in this film) looked like REM’s Michael Stipe (and he was pouting accordingly). Another guy looked a bit like Ewen McGregor. And still a third (with his helmet on, at least) was a dead-ringer for Nicholas Cage. So we had a lot of fun with that.

But the comedy wrote itself. I do not exaggerate when I say that about every ten minutes there was someone inside the Israeli tank pissing into a metal receptacle. It became a running joke that you couldn’t avoid. What kind of statement the libtard producers of this film were trying to make, I don’t know. But we saw no one drinking any fluids. And inside that very hot tank, it’s debatable whether one would actually need to urinate. You’d just sweat the water away.

There was so much pissing in this film that I expected to find a urologist named in the credits. It was damned bizarre. But the production values of the film were generally good. But this turned out to be more of the Seinfeld of tank movies: It was a tank movie about nothing….nothing but a bunch of soldiers who didn’t want to be there and looked as if they had never operated a tank before in their lives. Much like the mediocre Captain Phillips, there is no setup to this film. There is no context. Who is fighting whom? Why? How long has it been going on? You get nothing.

So my hunt for the perfect tank movie continues. If you have any suggestions, let me know. But stay away from this one unless you have a couple pals who like getting together to make fun of bad movies. This one tanked.
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Brad Nelson

About Brad Nelson

I like books, nature, politics, old movies, Ronald Reagan (you get sort of a three-fer with that one), and the founding ideals of this country. We are the Shining City on the Hill — or ought to be. However, our land has been poisoned by Utopian aspirations and feel-good bromides. Both have replaced wisdom and facts.
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2 Responses to Movie Review: Lebanon (2009)

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    From some things I’ve read (including Kevin Williamson’s Politically Incorrect Guide to Socialism), calling Israel in that period as socialist as Sweden may be an insult to the latter. The Swedes had very high taxes on personal income and a cradle-to-grave welfare state, but relatively low business taxes and less government control of business than many countries (which is why it was able to work for so long).

    As for tank movies, I can’t think of anything to add. Maybe if they made a movie of one of David Drake’s Hammer’s Slammers stories (which were his way of working out his experience in an armored infantry unit in Vietnam) . . .

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      …calling Israel in that period as socialist as Sweden may be an insult to the latter.

      I stand corrected. But it wasn’t that long ago that I discovered that Israel is a fairly socialist/liberal country. They are as badly infected with Leftist activists judges as we are. And their population constantly loses its mind over stupid ideas…including land for peace.

      It was always just my assumption that Israel was sort of an Old Testament country. Apparently nothing could be further from the truth. I think they’re a good country. They’re certainly a besieged and oft demonized country. But I’ll pass on my apologies to Sweden just as soon as I can.

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