Stop-Loss (DVD)

Stop-Loss is a film that is made for this specific time, dealing with the trials and tribulations that soldiers coming from the Iraq war must face as they become normalized to society. Specifically, the policy which Stop-Loss is named after means that if the military wants a soldier to come back after their normal tour of duty is up, they have to do so or face serious charges. The main character of Stop-Loss, Brandon King (played by Ryan Phillippe), has a stop-loss order but decides to go AWOL (absent without leave) in order to begin to reconstruct the life that ey once had with family and friends. The bonus features that Paramount has provided on this film really fill in any blanks that individuals may have or questions that may have came up when viewers were viewing Stop-Loss.

Beyond the deleted scenes (which number 11, and which each contain a bit of commentary explaining the significance that they had to the film as well as the reasons why they ultimately were left on the cutting room floor), the featurette “The Making of Stop-Loss” is an interesting look behind the scenes of the film. Futhermore, the commentary that ties together co-writer Mark Richard (known for books Fishboy and Charity) and director Kimberly Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry) is able to tie together the story of Phillippe’s character with the larger problem of the Stop-Loss rule on the minds and bodies of young Americans that have already served abroad .

Finally, the “A Day In Boot Camp” featurette is important to show exactly how hard the work of soldiers in the United States armed forces is; where there has been some ideas put forth that those in the armed services may not be giving their all, the physical and mental exertion of boot camp proves true the old adage that a soldier will do more before 8 AM than other people do all day. MTV Films (the firm that produced the movie) has grown considerably since the days of dismal movies like Joe’s Apartment and Dead Man On Campus to creating some serious works of film that talk directly to the younger adult set. Here’s to hoping that I-Empire (Angels and Airwaves’ premiere movie) and the re-make of The Warriors contain even a slight bit of the amazing emotional intensity that Stop-Loss had to it.

Rating: 8.2/10

Stop-Loss (DVD) / 2008 Paramount / 111 Minutes / /

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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