Up Close And Personal.
Heineman has made a drama that is at peak of humankind’s worst fear and it is a true story. A riveting take of his on the infamous journalist whose social service echos in our generation is for every woman herself. From head to toe, this has and always will be Pike’s movie. No matter how sharp Heineman’s execution is, or no matter how many big questions it raises the answer is Pike, Pike and Pike. The film thrives upon the war theme and most of the movie is dipped into the field, but personally the film will communicated to me is the repercussion it causes on a civilized person. And it’s that aftermath that Heineman scores perpetually with winning figures on screen. Neither the structure is of your typical textbook biography nor does it relies upon the antics of the film. In fact, I would argue there isn’t one.
There is no build up to any sequence, it just flows smoothly and consistently giving an absorbing tale with enough reasons to dive deep into this politics. And yes, as far as such genre consists, it is provocative, but the theme demanded it to be. The film oozes power even while it is resisting or is under the shade of a higher power, and it is that feeling of being helpless and still survive with strong willpower and bravery that you have to hold onto; on that note that Heineman has successfully colored his film with, it is a complete triumph.
On terms of performance, as mentioned before, there is no need to look back, Pike is there to be the apt host of this gut wrenching world and she is there for the most part of it. For, if she leaves the screen even for a frame, you can feel that empty void inside you and in the film. To have that amount of command over the viewers and the film is no easy job, that impact is something that is rarely seen, and the last time I felt that was when I was watching Whiplash and no drums could replace Simmons absence.
On her defense, she has an immensely incredible role to portray, and it can all be easily pinned down to her ideologies or perspective towards the guns blazing and bombs booming around her (when Pike teaches other reporter like hers on how to survive this environment). She gets plenty of sequences to drive the film around to her own will and her best side is visible when she is confessing her fears and emotions to Hollander after a heating argument.
Speaking of whom, Hollander and Tucci, the supporting actors, are too on their best behaviors, although Dornan still feels a bit short handed. The film gets damp and dense only when it is switching locations, as soon as you’re in, the compelling nail-biting sequences conjures you with harrowing inedible images that may not be everyone’s cup of tea. A Private War is as personal as a war should be, fighting her way up against major contenders, Pike gives her career’s best performance.