As the Allies make their final push into Nazi Germany, a battle-hardened U.S. Army Staff Sergeant in the 66th Armored Regiment, 2nd Armored Division (also known as “Hell on Wheels”) named Don “Wardaddy” Collier (Brad Pitt) commands an M4A3E8 76mm Sherman tank named Fury and its five-man, all-veteran crew: gunner Boyd “Bible” Swan (Shia LaBeouf); loader Grady “Coon-Ass” Travis (Jon Bernthal); and driver Trini “Gordo” Garcia (Michael Pena). The tank’s original assistant driver/bow gunner has been killed in battle. His replacement is a recently enlisted Army typist, Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman), who has neither seen the inside of a tank nor experienced the ravages of war. Norman eventually earns the nickname “Machine”, given to him by Grady Travis. The surviving crew, who have been together since the North African Campaign, belittle the new recruit upon meeting him, both for his lack of experience and for his reluctance to kill Germans, especially the teenagers of the Hitlerjugend; a decision which results in the death of their platoon leader, Lieutenant Parker, and the destruction of his tank and crew. In an effort to ‘educate’ him to the realities of war, a furious Wardaddy demands Norman kill a captive German artilleryman. When Norman refuses, Wardaddy forces the gun into his hand and makes him execute the prisoner. The bond between Norman and Wardaddy becomes stronger after capturing a small German town. Searching a house, Wardaddy and Norman discover a German woman, Irma, and her cousin Emma. Norman is then left behind closed doors in the bedroom with Emma. After they come out of the bedroom, the four then sit down and have breakfast together, but the tank crew barges in, rudely teasing the women and angering Wardaddy and Norman. Shortly afterwards, a German bombardment hits the town, killing Emma and some of the American forces. This, coupled with observing the retreating Germans soldiers burning their own towns and the cruelty they show to other Germans who do not fight for the Wehrmacht, hardens Norman. He confesses to Wardaddy that he has begun to enjoy killing Nazi soldiers. A platoon of four tanks, led by Fury, receives orders to hold a vital crossroads, protecting a clear path to supply trains and a camp full of allied nurses and cooks (the map shows Emmerthal south of Hameln, where the railway from the Ruhr district to Hanover crosses the Weser river). On the way to the crossroads, they are ambushed by a heavily-armed German Tiger I, which quickly destroys one of the tanks. The remaining three tanks reluctantly attack the German tank, knowing they are outgunned. The Sherman tanks advance and attempt to outflank the Tiger, but the other two Shermans are destroyed before they can make it. With some decisive and experienced maneuvering, Fury gets behind the Tiger where its armor is weakest, and destroys it. Bible notes that he believes they were spared for a reason and the men proceed to the crossroads, knowing that they are the only tank left to protect the camp down the road. As they reach the crossroads, the tank is immobilized when it hits a landmine. They soon realize a reinforced company of three hundred Waffen-SS mechanized infantry who have lost their half-tracks and trucks are heading their way. The crew initially wants to abandon the tank and escape on foot, but Wardaddy refuses to leave. The crew, not wanting to abandon their leader, decide to stay and plan an ambush…

First of all let me say that “Fury” is without no doubt a well made movie, from uniforms, tanks etc to its gritty and intense battle scenes. By far some of the better tank battle scenes I have seen on the screen. But, “Fury” is also a cliché ridden, machoistic and stereotypical action movie with WWII more or less as a backdrop in all the visual and fast paced graphic violence and death. I reckon Ayer tries to give us an insight of the hell war is and how it actually was being part of an Armored Division during WWII, but he makes “Fury” partly like a shoot em up flick for the young generation and he gets partly lost in how well he wants to make the action sequences and not really communicate what war does to mankind in a stronger emotional and believable way. It just becomes very “cartoony” compared to how Spielberg handled “Saving Private Ryan” in my point of view. Rafer Guzman of the periodical Newsday admired director Ayer who “does a good job of putting us inside the tank Fury,” film with “all the extra blood and brutality, this is still a macho and romanticized war movie.”. The stereotypical tank crew, no need to actually point it out more than that, becomes very 1 dimensional even if Ayer has given them several layers as characters. The only one that really stands out in my opinion is Boyd “Bible” Swan played by Shia LaBeouf. A man on the verge of constant despair and redemption for his sins on the battle field. There´s flaws, several to be honest, but when reading a lot of reviews on IMDB that slams the authenticity on for example how bad the germans are at hitting the tank with panzerfausts etc, makes me just wanting to point out that then you need to question the authenticity of all major WWII movies ever made more or less. Yes, it makes no sense that a platoon of 300 Waffen SS soldiers with several panzerfausts are getting slaughtered by an immobile tank in the middle of a road or that Norman is spared by the SS soldier who discovers him under the tank. Then again, maybe that SS soldier was tired of killing. Maybe he didn´t see any point on killing an unarmed kid under that tank. Maybe those 300 Waffen SS soldiers were all rookies and just failed in the heat of the battle. My point with this is that a lot of these reviews on IMDB are just reflecting on the movie from a very narrow point of view concerning authenticity and not looking at the whole picture with wider eyes. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Steven Rea gave the film 3 out of 4 stars and praised, “Fury presents an unrelentingly violent, visceral depiction of war, which is perhaps as it should be. Bayonets in the eye, bullets in the back, limbs blown apart, corpses of humans and horses splayed across muddy, incinerated terrain. Ayer brought a similar you-are-there intensity to his 2012 cops-on-patrol drama, End of Watch (also with Peña).” But on the opposite side of Rea’s admiration, he thinks, “It wouldn’t be right to call Fury entertaining, and in its narrow focus (as narrow as the view from the tank’s periscope), the film doesn’t offer a broader take on the horrors of war – other than to put those horrors right in front of us, in plain view.” War is ugly, war is hell and I can´t even try to imagine how it is to be at war or at the frontline during a major war. Yes, I agree that Ayer missed out on creating a WWII movie that really touches you emotionally, both in the brain and in the heart, but he has created a visual WWII bonanza that is still gripping and engaging despite major flaws. (4 out 5)

Fury