cranky home
Reviews since 1993:   A-E     F-N      O-Z    Posters       Who We Are and Why We Do What We Do         Search the Site

Your Donations support the Site

amazon.gif
Top Selling DVD     Books

BLU-RAY DVDs:
50 Shades of Grey
Exodus Gods and Kings
Grand Budapest Hotel
Imitation Game, The
Into the Woods

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
Robocop
Selma
Theory of Everything
Ride Along
We're the Millers
The Great Gatsby
Akira
Avatar
The Avengers
Amazing Spider-Man
Girl w/ Dragon Tattoo
Dark Knight Trilogy
World War Z
Happy Feet 2
Iton Man 3 combo
Batman Begins
Dark Knight
Fifth Element
The Hangover
Hunger Games
James Bond 11 disc coll.
Lord of the Rings trilogy
Mission Impossible GP
Sherlock Holmes AGOS
Singing in the Rain
Snow White Huntsman
Star Trek Into Darkness combo
Star Wars Saga
21 Jump Street
Ultimate Matrix coll
X-Men First Class
X-Men Trilogy
X-Men Wolverine

 BLU-Ray for Family DVDs 
Alice in Wonderland (2010)
Bambi
A Bug's Life
Cars
Chronicles of Narnia set
Coraline
Ghostbusters
Harry Potter 1-8 collection
Iron Man 2 combo
Kung Fu Panda
Lord of the Rings Trilogy Pinocchio
Pirates of Caribbean trilogy
Pixar short films
Ratatouille
Rio
Shrek the Whole Story
Sleeping Beauty
The Smurfs
combo
Snow White & 7 Dwarfs
Star Trek motion pictures set
Star Trek TNG Season One
Star Wars Saga (1-6)
Toy Story combo
Toy Story 2 combo
Toy Story 3 combo
Wall-E SE

OFCS

Search engine by FreeFind
Click to add search to YOUR web site!
click to search site

 DISNEY PIXAR DVDs
Alice in Wonderland
Bambi
Beauty and the Beast
Bolt
Cinderella
Coraline
E.T.
Kung Fu Panda
The Lion King
Mary Poppins 45th LE
Pinocchio
Princess Mononoke
Ratatouille
Rio 
Shrek the Whole Story
Simpsons Movie
Spider-Man Trilogy
Spirited Away
Star Trek movies set
Star Trek TOS (TV)
ST:TNG complete tv set
Star Wars Trilogy (1-3)
Star Wars Trilogy (4-6)
Toy Story DVD combo
Toy Story 2 DVD combo
Toy Story 3 DVD combo
Wallace and Gromit
Wall-E SE

Buy Movie collectibles
TV/Movie Collectibles

movie review query engine

NY film critics online

Privacy Policy


Click for full sized poster

U-571

Rated [PG-13]
Starring Matthew McConaughey, Bill Paxton, Harvey Keitel and Jon Bon Jovi
Screenplay and Directed by Jonathan Mostow
website: www.u-571.com

Cranky's Review. Paul Fischer's review here. Links below for StarTalk

IN SHORT: Dynamite.

Back in the days of the "good war" the German Nazi war machine had an unbreakable code generated by a device code named ENIGMA. Over the course of about three years, Allied Forces managed to piece together parts of the code, culminating with the capture of a complete machine in 1944. Having broken the code, Allied Command was forced to watch as the other side continued to sink our ships, for getting word to those ships would tip the Germans to the fact that we knew what they were thinking. That's a story for another day, unlike the compressed story told by writer/director Jonathan Mostow in U-571, is a superb thriller and a great ride, once things in the story go from bad to worse.

And while we move on to telling you all that we'll tell you, this here's as good a place as any to plug our StarTalk one-on-one interviews with the film's stars Matthew McConaughey and Jon Bon Jovi, all conducted by our LA correspondent, Paul Fischer. OK, back to the war . . .

Mostow sets his story in the Spring of 1942, with the US fresh into the war and still running World War I era subs like the S-33, which will never be captained by Lt. Andrew Tyler (Matthew McConaughey) who has been passed over for promotion. Tyler's hopes have been shot down by his Lt. Commander Mike Dahlgren (Bill Paxton) and, before he can request transfer to another boat, the S-33 ships out on a mission of utmost secrecy and importance. It seems that Intelligence has tracked radio signals from a floundering Nazi sub (and how that happened starts this story in high gear) in the mid-Atlantic. The Germans have dispatched a rescue sub; The S-33's mission is to get there first, waylay the crew and steal the Enigma coding machine and code books. Best estimate is that our side can get there ten hours before their side.

Nope. Nothing I've written spills anything that isn't in the trailer or teevee spot, so don't complain. Let's just say that the nine Americans who find themselves in control of a crippled, leaky U-boat must fight the impossible fight against the full strength of a healthy Nazi Navy, determined to send that Enigma machine to the depths. Among the American crew (some will live and some won't) are Chief Klough (Harvey Keitel in a low key, dead on dramatic performance), Lt. Peter Emmett (Jon Bon Jovi), crewmen Mazzola (Erik Palladino) Wentz (Jack Noseworthy) and mess steward Eddie (T.C. Carson) and Special Ops officers Lt. Hirsch (Jake Weber) and Major Coonan (David Keith). German officer Kapitanlieutenant Wassner (Thomas Kretschmann), a captive below decks plays a key role as well.

We were taught in school of the "can do" effort of wartime America, recovering from the almost complete destruction of the Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, and Mostow's script, filled with depth charge and torpedo battles and the decreasing odds for survival of our heroes, exploits that spirit to the letter. His direction exploits the claustrophobic conditions of the ship and the special effects run the gamut from bone shaking to downright beautiful. I never thought I'd write that about a depth charge going off, but you'll know the scene when you see it.

U-571 is a great popcorn flick, and while I usually use that term in a deprecating fashion, I don't now. Outside of a short pause at the beginning of the flick, catch your breath - you'll need it, U-571 doesn't stop. Not in its action, not to slow down and detail what happened to the crewmen that don't make it. Put the popcorn hand on autopilot and have a good time.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Eight Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to U-571, he would have paid...

$7.50

Great flick. Great time in the dark. No argument.

Click to buy films by Jonathan Mostow
Click to buy films starring Matthew McConaughey
Click to buy films starring Harvey Keitel
Click Here!

The Cranky Critic website is Copyright © 1995  -  2017  by Chuck Schwartz. Articles by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of,©, ®, their respective studios and are used by permission. All Rights Reserved. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.