I was disturbed by this movie but
I don't think it was in quite the way that the director had in mind.
First of all, why isn't this movie called Four Kings since there are four
guys? This is just the first thing that doesn't make much sense in this
slow moving movie that doesn't know whether it is an action movie or a
deep philosophical movie commenting on war and religion. It fails on both
counts. Most of the time it is an unfunny version of the Keystone
Kops. The plot, as you must already know from the ubiquitous trailers,
is that some soldiers (three in the trailer, four in the movie) in Desert
Storm try to steal some gold bullion (not bouillon) that Saddam has stolen
from Kuwait. And, also seen in the trailer, these same soldiers get more
than they bargained for as they get involved in the Shiite rebellion against
Saddam that took place right after Desert Storm. Now unless you already
know this, you won't figure out what's happening from the movie. All you
see is that the Iraqi army is more interested in killing Iraqis than Americans.
The only surprise in this movie is where they find the map to the gold.
While we are waiting for something to happen, the director, David O. Russell,
tries to spice things up with every camera technique he learned in film
school. Most bizarrely, this includes shots of what happens to your internal
organs when you get hit by a bullet. He seems particularly interested in
bile. The Three (Four) Kings are meant to seem heroic and compassionate
as they try to save some Shiites from Saddam. I was unmoved. George Clooney
is good and looks good as the number one King. Mark "Marky Mark" Wahlberg
is stolid as King number two. Nora Dunn plays a thinly veiled Christiane
Amanpour, CNN's war correspondent, as an idiot. By the way, this
movie has been made before. It's called Kelly's
Heroes, a very good movie set in World War II where Clint Eastwood
plays the George Clooney role. I would recommend renting it instead.