When people finally take the time to evaluate their movie watching experiences in 2016, it’s a pretty safe bet that few will remember Eye in the Sky. And that will be a great tragedy.
The film’s main story is relatively simple – it follows the events of what is supposed to be a military ground capture operation in Kenya that requires drone surveillance. What actually transpires is a multi-layered, deeply complex and emotional study on whether we (British citizens) are comfortable with the use of drone-strikes in the on going war on terror.
For me, this film confirms what I long suspected – I don’t envy the politicians that have to make these decisions. We citizens give the men and women who make national security decisions for us a lot of shit, but the experience of watching this film confirmed how agonising being in the hot-seat would be.
How do you justify using force against your own citizens in an friendly country? Force that would cause collateral damage to the innocent population of that country?
On the other hand, could you live with yourself if you found out that you could have stopped a terrorist attack that killed scores of people?
The war on terror is a very complicated subject matter and this wonderfully crafted film makes people who say otherwise look like … well, people who don’t take the subject matter seriously.
Everyone in this film is wonderful. Helen Mirren shows why she deserves the Dame at the beginning of her name, the late Alan Rickman signs off with a quite remarkable performance as the ‘solder’ Lieutenant General Benson and Aaron Paul shows that he could very well be the real deal.
But overall, I genuinely feel sorry for this film. It’s caught up in one hell of a crowded year. Gavin Hood (THE LAD DID TSOTSI!!!) and his crew deserve all the credit in the world for this movie. More importantly, this film deserves to be remembered as one of the real gems of 2016.