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Pearl Harbor (2001) **

Paerl HarborThe attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941, was a defining moment in world-history; an event of major proportions. Bringing this event to life in film, in a manner that would leave an impression, is something Pearl Harbor, the movie, does not. The makers of this Hollywood version, decided to make it into a period piece, focusing on style more than on story. Furthermore, when handling events that are already dramatic in nature, a light hand is required. But Pearl Harbor, the movie, suffers from melodrama topped off with tears and misplaced dramatic music. An example for the contrary are excellent war films such as Flag of Our Fathers and Saving Private Ryan. Rather than focusing on the whole, a good film focuses on a small detail, a specific line of plot, and through it reflects the bigger picture. This valuable lesson seems to have flown by undetected by the filmmakers. And so the question remains – is the gooey syrupy blood, spilled during the war scenes, thicker than the syrupy melodrama of the plot?... This film was a close one-star rating but I gave it two stars all the same as the battle scenes and airplanes dogfights are well-staged (despite some historical inaccuracies).

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