Brad Pitt dons a U.S. army uniform once again in David Ayer’s bloody World War Two epic set in the European Theatre of War
The aptly named Fury is set in Germany during April 1945, the final month of World War Two. Directed by David Ayer (End of Watch, Sabotage) follows the last push into Nazi Germany through the eyes of the five-man crew of a tank named ‘Fury’, led by Don “Wardaddy” Collier (Brad Pitt). Collier, Swan (Shia LaBeouf), Travis (Jon Bernthal) and Garcia (Michael Peña) are joined by the newly enlisted Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman) after their gunner is killed in battle.
The naïve young Norman, an army typist, has never seen the inside of a tank before, and his lack of experience becomes glaringly obvious when his reluctance to fire his gun results in the death of a fellow allied soldier. Set against the gruesome backdrop of Nazi Germany, Ayer depicts Norman’s struggle to be accepted by his crew while adapting to the brutality of war. The stomach-churning standoffs between the Allies and the Nazis are so grippingly tense they are almost too difficult to watch. Ayer also captures the true horrors of World War Two in a particularly harrowing scene which children are shown hanging from trees with German signs around their neck which read “I am a coward who refused to fight for my country”.
Describing himself as a “ruthless” director, Ayer pushed his actors to the limits in their preparation for the film, in order to give them glimpses into what life was like for a soldier in World War Two, and to ensure authenticity in the film. Pitt, LaBeouf, Bernthal, Peña and Lerman all attended a boot camp and ate and slept in the tank for extended periods of time. This is evident in the genuine camaraderie seen between the soldiers.
We are given glimpses into the lives of the soldiers, such as the devout Christianity of Swan, who continuously quotes the Bible, but the underlying message given is that in war, all men are equal, and Fury perfectly encapsulates the heroic efforts of those who fought and died to defeat Nazi Germany.
Director: David Ayer
Cast: Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman, Shia LaBeouf
Genre: Historical Action
Running Time: 134 minutes