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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Mexico fans react after Mexico F Julián Quiñones 73rd-minute goal during the MexTour match between Mexico and Brazil at Kyle Field on Saturday, June 8, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
‘The stuff of dreams’
Ian Curtis, Sports Reporter • June 11, 2024

As soon as the Mexico-Brazil soccer match at Kyle Field was announced, Jacob Svetz and Caitlin Falke saw an opportunity.  The match was scheduled...

The Fighting Texas Aggie Band performs at halftime during Texas A&Ms football game against ULM at Kyle Field on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2023.
Gridiron glory to multi-event marvel
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • June 7, 2024

Special teams: Special events  “My favorite thing about an event is seeing the people come into the stadium and seeing their excitement...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Chris Hemsworth as Dementus in Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga.
Review: ‘Furiosa’ is a must-see
Justin ChenJune 4, 2024

My jaw dropped open in 2016. Rarely in life does that happen, but the viewing experience of “Mad Max: Fury Road" was something to behold....

Texas A&M pitcher Chris Cortez (10) reacts during Texas A&M’s game against Oregon at the NCAA Bryan-College Station Super Regional at Olsen Field on Saturday, June 8, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
One step away
June 8, 2024

The legend that is ‘American Sniper’



When you enter a movie theater to see a war movie, especially one that is talked about as much as “American Sniper” has been, you expect it to be intense until the end, realistic as if from the battlezone and, in a word, awesome. “American Sniper” had all these qualities as Bradley Cooper transformed on screen into burly Navy SEAL Chris Kyle.
The biographical drama takes place in early 2000s Iraq, fresh after 9/11, and follows Chris Kyle’s entrance into the military after he is inspired by news coverage of the war in the Middle East.
Bradley Cooper has been on the rise in the film industry since his performances in the Hangover trilogy, and has become quite excellent at selecting movies where he invests his time and effort.
In “American Sniper” he isn’t surrounded by a superstar cast, such as “American Hustle” and “Silver Linings Playbook.” He proved he can take a movie and own it without being just a supporting actor.
Actors like Mark Wahlberg thrive in these movies, but Cooper shows his versatility, playing a character far different from that in “Limitless” or “The Words.”
The movie starts with Cooper’s character, Chris Kyle, taking his first sniper shot on an insurgent woman before taking the audience on a flashback into his decision and process to become a SEAL -— a pretty cliché technique, especially since it’s directed by Clint Eastwood, who is a movie veteran and adds his own gray filter that he likes to use in his movies. Another platitude is how much the film emphasized Kyle’s Texas origins through Cooper’s character. Kyle’s cowboy persona is played up with a thick accent and bears a stereotypical overdone southern demeanor. However, after reading a little about who Kyle actually was, it was justified since he was an actual horse-riding native Texan.
Throughout the movie Kyle becomes a living legend, recording an overwhelming number of kills and protecting his fellow comrades at any cost. But even though they portray Kyle as the best sniper in American history, he doesn’t actually snipe as much as you expect him to. The film instead shows him clearing buildings to get more action and creates another plotline. This steers away from the sniper theme and brings up questions of what the movie is really about. Don’t expect a movie solely about a sniper and his gun.
The character development is well done as the production team shows the metamorphosis of a fun-loving cowboy to a war-torn veteran when Cooper is forced to come back to domestic life. This creates some of the main conflict in the movie and puts the audience on edge, sometimes more than when in a battlezone, because Cooper effectively depicts a soldier ready to act on his post-traumatic stress disorder-induced flashbacks.
“American Sniper” isn’t only about Kyle’s journey through his four tours in Iraq but about the effect war has on soldiers. This prompts audience members to sympathize with Kyle and adds another layer to the movie.
“American Sniper” lives up to the hype and so far looks to come up big in the Oscar race, elevating Bradley Cooper to higher prestige in the acting world.
Jack Riewe is an English junior and a life and arts writer for The Battalion.

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