Universal/Legendary (Angelina Jolie, Matthew Baer, Erwin Stoff
& Clayton Townsend)
W: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, Richard LaGravenese & William
Nicholson [based on the book by Laura Hillenbrand]
DP: Roger Deakins
Ed: Tim Squyres & William Goldenberg
Mus: Alexandre Desplat
Jack O'Connell (Louis Zamperini), Takahasa 'Miyavi' Ishihara
(Mutsuhiro Watanabe), Domhnall Gleeson (Russell Phillips), Garrett Hedlund (LCDR John Fitzgerald), Finn Wittrock (Francis McNamara)
Unbroken is an amazing story that the film doesn't quite
match the potential towards, perhaps due to its over-bloated length and some rather colour-by-numbers direction.
Angelina Jolie, with her second directorial effort,
presents the story of Louis Zampereni, an Olympic athlete whose physical endurance, stamina and spirit was put to the ultimate limits in a Japanese POW camp during the Second World
The film opens with an unnecessarily non-linear narrative,
in which an air battle during Zampereni's time in service is edited with his efforts in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. After the first act, the film develops a more standard linear narrative as
the main character and his crew crash land in the Pacific Ocean & face near death as they spend 45 days drifting in a dinghy before eventually being captured by the enemy.
The remainder of the film follows a traditional linear
path in which the captured men are starved, beaten and forced into a life of slave labour, all at the amusement of a sadistic Japanese officer (Takamasa Ishihara - the film's best
Though Jack O'Connell gives a decent performance as a very
passive character, he doesn't quite have enough charisma to do anything particularly memorable with the lead character.
All the other aspects of the production values are good,
particularly the cinematography, but there's something about it that seemed like it was released as potential Oscar-bait rather than bringing its sombre & poignant story to the big