Movie Review of Few Good men
A few good men is an American court room drama directed by Rob Reiner and starring Tom
Cruise, Jack Nicholson, and Demi Moore in lead roles.
Opens with two marines walking into the room of another, brutally gaging him. While he
suffocates the screen fades away into open garden where marines marches with clocklike
Dawson and Downey, the two marines who walked into the room of another(Sam
Weinberg) were then accused of the later's death. Dawson and Downey who claim to have no
intent of killing but just to carry codered that was ordered on them by superseding officers were
assigned a defence lawyer Daniel Kaffe(Tom Cruise). Kaffee is a cocky character who is
careless, jumping to conclusions attitude, never seen a court room, with mere one year in law
school was preferred to Cmdr. JoAnne Galloway who has a snail pace in court trials. Kaffe with
the help of Galloway and Kaffe's assisting attorney Lt. Sam Weinberg tries or rather forced to
uncover the truth behind the codered and convict the guilty, as he fails bargaining with Downey
who refuses to dishonour himself for reduced conviction.
The highlights of the movie are:
The rhetoric and witty dialogues of Colonel Jessup and Jack Nicholson's delivery were one of a
Jack Nicholson,Tom cruise acting, director, plot, meticulous screenplay witty dialogues and
casting stand as best features.
Performance of Tom cruise as a cocky, careless, cool and also smart young lad was
impressive. It vivified the role and added lot of energy and humour into movie. The flarry
dialogues that Lt. Kaffe and Colonel Jessup in courtroom were one of a kind and can also be
recorded as some of the best.
Setbacks of the movie:
There weren’t too many surprises in the plot, but pleasing because of the tightly weaved nature
Demeanour seems whimsical and coincidental.
The movie opens with marines marching and tossing and twirling the rifles with immense
precision, though director has nothing to do with this; he must be praised for atleast allocating
budget over cadets who did it.
When marines(Downey and Dawson) gets into the room of Sam to carry out codered, Sam
opens his eyes though the two were shown moving with cat paws, implying on the
readiness/cautious nature of a soldier.
Director also has done his assignment in knowing the internals of court rooms, naval bases in
Cuba, psychologies of Soldiers and fanatical military officers.
Capability of the protagonist as an attorney was well portrayed and portrayed in a cool!
manner(metaphorically), this also attributes to the humour in a very serious plot.
Many details were taken care of, like when subattorney Galloway seeks permission of Kaffe
before arguing the case in court room, the uniforms of marines, books, pens, the direction in
which cups holders point(right handed/lefthanded), badges on uniforms, eye contacts. The
director seems to be a meticulous moron.
At the lunch table in naval base Cuba, Galloway was seen holding the cup not from the holder;
this shows the preoccupied nature of her towards asking questions to Colonel.
Dialogues and Jack Nicholson(Colonel Jessup):
Most witty dialogues seems to be reserved for Colonel Jessup and Jack Nicholson revived the
dialogues with his vivifying delivery.
Some excerpts from the transcripts are:
"You can't handle the truth! Son, we live in a world that has walls. And those walls have to be
guarded by men with guns. Who's gonna do it? You? You, Lt. Weinberg? I have a greater
responsibility than you can possibly fathom. You weep for Santiago and you curse the Marines.
You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know: that Santiago's death,
while tragic, probably saved lives. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to
you, saves lives...You don't want the truth. Because deep down, in places you don't talk about at
parties, you want me on that wall. You need me on that wall.
We use words like honor, code, loyalty...we use these words as the backbone to a life spent
defending something. You use 'em as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to
explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom I provide,
then questions the manner in which I provide it! I'd rather you just said thank you and went on
your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post. Either way, I don't give a
damn what you think you're entitled to!"
This dialogue by Colonel makes one think otherwise. Colonel who seemed a barbarian, he is
dark, ruthless and unpredictable. But what he states/argues in the above statement seems to
throw a lot of sense onto what Colonel is why he took a decision to train Sam rather than
sending him back home. Sam as an individual took a decision of becoming a marine, he seems
to underperform because of some health problems but his medical reports show nothing
abnormal though Sam complains doctor of fatigue and chest pain. Col. Jessup decided to train
Sam instead because he need to be strict towards gunmens guarding the city, ignorant of the
fact that Sam is suffering from acute coronary condition. The general public may not be able to
digest the fact that marine died because of Col.’s order and hence Col was jailed, but isn’t the
decision subjective? A dialogue which lasts not more than a minute evokes this thought in the
audience, this should be attributed both to the script and Jack.
The plot manifests sound facts of psychology, physiology, law and logic of deduction.
Psychology was manifested in the way Kaffe provokes Col. Physiology when Kaffe tries to argue
with the physician that Sam wasn’t poisoned hence strengthening his premise of intent, although
the physician didn’t concede to the Kaffe’s argument. Law and logic of deduction were portrayed
in many places.
None of the characters, frames or images exist in the plot or in the film which are irrelevant or
doesn’t contribute to the outcome of the judgement, its a very densely weaved plot.
A very intelligent dialogue/argument was made in courtroom in the climax scenes which are very
appealing and contributes to the Strengths.
As was stated earlier, the plot lags in a good finish. The climax looks fortuitous and coincidental,
which can actually make the whole movie a waste of time. While in the whole movie Kaffe tries
to accumulate all the evidences to aver the truth, none of them contributed to the outcome of the
case. In the climax, here could have failed utterly in provoking the Col in courtroom or the judge
could have overruled Lt.Kaffe, none of which have happened.
All in all, A few good men is a wonderful movie; A treat for the intellect.