Hurt Locker

Hurt Locker

3.9 75
Director: Kathryn Bigelow

Cast: Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie


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Based on the personal wartime experiences of journalist Mark Boal (who adapted his experiences with a bomb squad into a fact-based, yet fictional story), director Kathryn Bigelow's Iraq War-set action thriller The Hurt Locker presents the conflict in the Middle East from the perspective of those who…  See more details below


Based on the personal wartime experiences of journalist Mark Boal (who adapted his experiences with a bomb squad into a fact-based, yet fictional story), director Kathryn Bigelow's Iraq War-set action thriller The Hurt Locker presents the conflict in the Middle East from the perspective of those who witnessed the fighting firsthand -- the soldiers. As an elite Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal team tactfully navigates the streets of present-day Iraq, they face the constant threat of death from incoming bombs and sharp-shooting snipers. In Baghdad, roadside bombs are a common danger. The Army is working to make the city a safer place for Americans and Iraqis, so when it comes to dismantling IEDs (improvised explosive devices) the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) crew is always on their game. But protecting the public isn't easy when there's no room for error, and every second spent dismantling a bomb is another second spent flirting with death. Now, as three fearless bomb technicians take on the most dangerous job in Baghdad, it's only a matter of time before one of them gets sent to "the hurt locker." Jeremy Renner, Guy Pearce, and Ralph Fiennes star.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jeremy Wheeler
There's an underlying theme both in front of and behind the camera in the explosive war thriller The Hurt Locker -- and that is craft. The story follows bomb squad Staff Sgt. William James (Jeremy Renner) as he comes to terms with the fact that nothing much else matters in his life other than being the best at what he can do -- which is strap on a 100-lb. suit in 110+ degree heat and walk into a dangerous situation that he knows he can handle. With 873 successful bomb diffusions under his belt, James doesn't blink, he just does. The same goes for director Kathryn Bigelow, who has already proven herself capable of standing shoulder to shoulder with the big boys of action, but hits yet another confident stride with this exercise in high-pressure filmmaking. The reason to see the engrossing Hurt Locker isn't so much to soak in the politics of war or be overwhelmed by an overblown Hollywood budget, but to be taken on a journey of one breathless scene of tension after another. On the way, the heart of the picture makes itself apparent, but until then, this is an exemplary display of craft that's sure to take your breath away. The year is 2004, and the picture begins with a disastrous bomb-disarmament scene, laying the groundwork for just how dangerous a locale Baghdad really is for these troops. As if disarming bombs weren't enough, the soldiers have to keep on constant alert for insurgents who could be anyone around them. For this, the Army needs a three-man squad -- the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) crew -- a small force consisting of a point person and two others supplying lookout for trouble that can come from all sides. Such is the case for Sgt. J.T. Sanborn (Anthony Mackie) and Specialist Owen Eldridge (Brian Geraghty), who after losing their previous leader, are assigned to work under Staff Sgt. James (Renner), a maverick soldier whose efficient ways don't always end up on the right side of protocol. As the men's tour winds down, the pressure gets higher and higher for the crew, with one dangerous day leading to the next. Nerves are shot; people live and die at the switch of a button or the pull of a trigger -- thus it goes when you live in "the hurt locker." Some have labeled The Hurt Locker an action film, but that's a bit deceiving. What it lacks in traditional combat scenes, it more than makes up for in nail-biting tension. With each and every set piece, Bigelow amps up the pressure in precise ways that keep the audience nailed to their seats, as if they are right there in the midst of the war zone. The absence of a score in key scenes adds to the realism, as does the handheld cinematography, complete with the same kind of slight shake and quick zooms used to best effect within documentary filmmaking. And when the picture isn't ramping up your heart rate, it switches gears and becomes an intimate character study in what war does to humankind. Whether it's facing deadly obstacles that you live to overcome or being saddled with a crew member whose adrenaline addiction has put you directly in the line of fire, the hardships of war don't leave you with a lot of easy ways to return to normality in its aftermath. Though apolitical in much of its intentions, the film does nail home that fact -- which might end up being one of the strongest wartime messages of all. Not bad for such a meager little (by today's standards) action film. Not bad at all.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Summit Inc/Lionsgate
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Audio commentary with director Kathryn Bigelow and writer Mark Boal; The Hurt Locker: Behind the scenes; Image gallery

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jeremy Renner Staff Sgt. William James
Anthony Mackie Sgt, J.T. Sanborn
Brian Geraghty Specialist Owen Eldridge,Specialist Owen Eldrige
Guy Pearce Sgt. Matt Thompson
Ralph Fiennes Contractor Team Leader
David Morse Col. Reed
Evangeline Lilly Connie James
Christian Camargo Col. John Cambridge
Christopher Sayegh Beckham
Suhail Al-Dabbach Black Suit Man
Sam Spruell Contractor Charlie
Erin Gann Mortuary Affairs Officer
Justin Campbell Sgt. Carter
Malcolm Barrett Sgt. Foster
Ryan Tramont Guard at Liberty Gate

Technical Credits
Kathryn Bigelow Director,Producer
Barry Ackroyd Cinematographer
Ray Beckett Sound/Sound Designer
Marco Beltrami Score Composer
Mark Bennett Casting
John Bissell Musical Direction/Supervision
Mark Boal Producer,Screenwriter
David Bryan Art Director
Nicolas Chartier Producer
Chris Innis Editor
Karl Juliusson Production Designer
Jenn Lee Associate Producer
George Little Costumes/Costume Designer
Tony Mark Executive Producer
Donal McCusker Co-producer
Bob Murawski Editor
Paul N.J. Ottosson Sound/Sound Designer
Buck Sanders Score Composer
Jack Schuster Associate Producer
Greg Shapiro Producer
Richard Stutsman Special Effects Supervisor

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Hurt Locker
1. A Beautiful Neighborhood [9:59]
2. Welcome to Bravo Company [6:32]
3. Break out the Suit [5:33]
4. Daisy Chain [5:15]
5. Something in the Trunk [6:45]
6. Die Comfortable [9:31]
7. Purgatory [7:00]
8. No Place for a Picnic [13:09]
9. Movement on the Tracks [5:09]
10. Punch fro Punch [7:16]
11. A Standard Mission [:01]
12. Body Bomb [6:18]
13. Security Risk [7:06]
14. Tanker Explosion in the Green Zone [7:04]
15. Man Down [5:58]
16. Too Many Locks [7:23]
17. I Want a Son [7:11]
18. Welcome to Delta Company [7:14]


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The Hurt Locker 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 75 reviews.
SheWhoShall More than 1 year ago
1st, let me point out that my husband is EOD. We went to theater to see the movie with half of his command. They all pretty much concurred that while this movie is a bit of a far cry as to how they really operate, it's still a really entertaining movie. There is no place for guys like "Will" in the movie, lest everyone in the vicinity get blown up. As most military guys know, you can't exactly go rogue (too many times) because the hammer of authority will come down upon you. That said, the constant threat of dying, the hot and heavy bomb suits, the robots, the tempermental personalities in conflict with one another, the strained lives back home, the silly officers who filter into a situation with the idea of taking charge yet have no idea what's going on...that is entirely true to life. They don't, however, typically take off willy-nilly chasing down bad guys in alleyways with guns blazing nor do they try to track down little friends in their 'hood. But it makes for a good story. The acting is really quite good and the directing is awesome. For anyone who likes military movies or just action movies, this one is a good bet. After all, my husband is planning on buying it as soon as it's released...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You will have so much More respect for our troops after watching this.
mahps More than 1 year ago
biased by attending land mine warfare school in Korea in 1954, 1st. Mar. Div.
Jon_B More than 1 year ago
Very well made, a compelling character study rather than a statement about Iraq or war in general, and Renner does an excellent job. Additionally the sound design for this film is top notch.
Esquire More than 1 year ago
This is an absolute astounding movie. You are on edge through the whole movie as the plot progress you grow and follow the characters very complex emotion. The ending left me breathless. Highly recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After viewing the Academy Awards and witnessing the first Oscar to a female director (Kathryn Bigelow), I hoped that it wasn't just hype or publicity. "The Hurt Locker" does not disappoint. The compelling story grips viewers from the early scenes depicting the immense danger of the missions and takes them on an emotional ride that clearly illustrates how war is addictive. Jeremy Renner certainly deserved the Oscar nomination and appearances by Guy Pearce and Ralph Fiennes added to the high quality of the film which proved that blockbuster budgets are not necessary to produce blockbuster films. I am happy with my purchase as I am sure I will view it again and again- particularly with groups of people with whom I can share a thought-provoking intellectual discussion.
SleepDreamWrite More than 1 year ago
Heard of this but haven't seen it. Finally have and it was tense in some moments. Interesting though.
Donkey_Girl_08 More than 1 year ago
The movie has some awesome entertaining scenes, but the plot sucks. if its like >$10 buy it & watch itbut other wise its not worth paying full price
Cfnvster More than 1 year ago
Watched this movie on HBO when visiting family in October, I didn't want to watch it at first, as I have family in Iraq. Within the first five minutes I was HOOKED. When I got home I purchased it for my own collection. With regard to NEGATIVE REVIEWS... THIS is ENTERTAINMENT... NOT A DOCUMENTARY! This movie ENTERTAINS... is fast paced, keeps your attention and delivers... provided you like 'war' movies! You will NOT be disappointed. If you want reality... watch the NEWS... but, then again... you CAN'T BELIEVE their stories... all the time either! Boynton Beach, FL
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From start to finish it keeps you on the edge of your seat. The quote at the start of the movie,"War is a drug" , captures the main character.
mishawaka-bookie More than 1 year ago
What this movie lacks on plot, it explodes in intensifying just how war time conflict reshapes soldiers psyches. I promise you, the last ten minutes will stick with your subconscious for days, maybe weeks after. This simply plotted, sometimes confusing movies is well worth it's ending.
Ozwell More than 1 year ago
Hurt Locker is destined to become an all-time classic movie, mostly because it pulled off the unbelievable coup of winning the 2010 Academy Award for best picture. The danger with this movie is coming to it with the inflated expectations that you can't help but bring to the 'best' movie of the year. Not wanting to take anything away from the film, but I'd rather have discovered it as a 'forgotten gem' rather than the 'giant killer' rep the media stuck it with. It did remind me of HBO mini series "Generation Kill" a lot. Getting over that hurdle, there's a lot to like here. Jeremy Renner's central performance is memorable and there are some surprising - and delightful - cameos from big name stars. There's a real sense of menace and reality in the documentary style of some sequences. The action scenes are thrilling and suspenseful - paying off on Kathryn Bigelow's long career as a master of the action movie and a student of male behaviour in extreme situations. Seek out other movies by Bigelow for a further treat. 'Near Dark' is my fave.
Heavy_Metal_Sushi More than 1 year ago
Have you ever watched a movie where you were just enthralled in what was going on & what was going to happen to any characters...or just so tense in a few certain parts because you just knew that something was about to happen suddenly? Well...both of those scenarios are what you're going to get when you watch this movie. There are some situations where they are searching for or trying to disarm bombs and you're simply breathless, because you have no idea what's about to happen...that they could be attacked or blown away at any moment in the process...and a couple of times, it does happen to a couple of soldiers, which is tragic. I do understand that some of the things they do in this is now what those particular soldiers would do, and being a movie, it is likely fabricated...but it still shows some of what those soldiers actually do over seas, and it is certainly eye opening and give you a new found respect for those guys. If you have not seen this movie, you really ought to. I recommend that any consenting adult in the united states give this movie at least a watch. It's an eye opening movie...and you will also get to see some pretty good performances by Jeremy Renner (who I haven't seen any of since SWAT), and Anthony well as Guy Pearce, though he is only in it for the first little bit of the movie. Check it out folks. God bless America!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent adherence to military operations and techniques. Good portrayal of the personality differences and conflicts of the soldiers. Very realistic movie. In addition to the "bomb squad" activities featured in the story, the movie provides an excellent insight into unforgiving, desolate geography of the countries to which we are sending our troops as well as a realistic view of the actions and interactions of our military personel with the people in the war-torn countries. Friend? Foe? A good rule of thumb. . .trust no one. HURT LOCKER is a "must see" movie for those who are not "faint of heart". It realistically shows the fanaticism of some of the people we are trying to "save" as well as why it is so important that we attempt to assist the genuine non combatant. The movie is riveting look into the horrors of war, not a relaxing, escapism flick.
RSJC More than 1 year ago
Excellent, captivating portrayal of life at the front lines in war time. Gritty and realistic...The Oscar achievements of this film were well deserved. Even if some aspects are not typical, they help give the people far removed from the war front an eye opening experience of what our brave men face each day. The portrayal of how the Iraqis see the American troops is enlightening.
Tidalwave3 More than 1 year ago
A MIX OF HOLLYWOOD and WAR SCRIPTS! HIGHS and LOWS! GOOD and BAD! THIS VIDEO HAS ALL OF THESE!! I experienced the personalities of this movie in the Corps in 1970 thru 1973. My son's experiences in The Marines today tell me it has intensified. Not everyone nor every unit is like the others in the military. I believe that is why the different reviews, but that does not tell every story. This is but one of them. CHECK OUT THE MOVIE FOR YOURSELF!! One thing about this movie everyone seems to agree, IT IS DRAMA! The adrenalin rush when you have diffused an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) and then pull a chord and find six more connected, it helps if you are a little crazy. You have to let out steam (pressure) sometime or you will explode. This movie shows that as well. I thought they went alittle far in the sniper scene, as they acted like they had the training from Fort Benning. I do not think so. The almost daily pressure of trying to save a person with an Improvised Explosive Device chained to them. Like Medical Doctors you want to win them all but you have to learn that you will not win them all. The reality of coming home after the tour in Iraq and everything can go back to the way it was in a mondane life style is STUPID. Where is the "cool down" for a soldier coming from an intense setting? I can understand the conclusion of the movie "welcome to delta company"! View it for yourself!
jmetigers More than 1 year ago
I picked this video up because of the awards it won, and had no real idea of what it was about. However, I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. You never know what is going to happen, and you certainly are emotionally attached to the characters. It was hard to watch at times due to the political foundation of the movie. However, I think the actors and the content of this movie is excellent.
110kitty More than 1 year ago
Great movie--the tension of the job and the stress on the solders is maintained throughout. Most important is the believablability of the actors playing the three main characters. Well worth seeing
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fantastic movie. Wonderful performances by some very talented actors. God bless the guys who do this on a daily basis.
HikingGirl More than 1 year ago
This is one of those movies that you are sorry you like. It is the story of what some of our soldiers have to endure. So, you can say you don't like it but that doesn't change the fact that this stuff happens. The movie is very well made and held my attention the entire time. Good Work !!!!
Ron_H More than 1 year ago
And engrossing film from, and a well-deserved Oscar for, Kathryn Bigelow.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Because I don't like a lot of violence and gore and usually don't like ware movies, I really thought I didn't want to see this movie. My theory is that we should all just learn to accept each others differences and do our best to get along. War is senseless and I don't like to watch people killing other people. But my husband is a big war film fan. He loves to watch the old movies about the world wars and anything that contains any history about any of the wars the US has been involved in. His Dad was in the Navy during WWII and served on the USS South Dakota during some of the big battles, so he heard lots of stories growing up. That and his natural curiosity and love of history make these kinds of movies "must sees" for him. Being the good sport that I am, and because it won so many awards, I decided I'd at least give it a chance and ended up really impressed by the way it was presented. I still think war is senseless and I still don't like to watch people killing other people, but this movie really brings the war right into your front room. I was really able to understand what our service men and women are doing for us, and it gave me a much greater appreciation of the sacrifices they are making. I already had an appreciation for their sacrifices, but his changed my whole view and really made it real for me. It's a movie everyone should watch for that reason alone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was a little disapointed since this won best picture this year. Some parts were great, but the overall message was depressing. The main character is so detached from his wife and baby. He lives for his work and is great at it. It was unclear if we are making any progress in the war. Maybe that was the point.
purrfectmatch More than 1 year ago
This is not the first war movie I've seen. As for why it one best picture is way beyond me. Any war movie that is based on real people or real life, should draw the audience in and make them care about the characters. I couldn't even finish the film. Character development came in canyon sized leaps, leaving the audience left behind. Backgrounds on characters was sketchy at best, and for something that was based on reality, it was lacking to say the least. I felt disconnected from the characters, and the one you kind of connect to, gets blown up at the beginning of the film. Reminds me of We Were Soldiers. I should care whether the characters live or die and I didn't. I've felt sadness for a cartoon dog dying, then men who are in the middle of a war zone. So much potential , flushed down the drain.