There are very few reviews out about the latest project from Clint Eastwood and Paul Haggis. Variety and Hollywood Reporter both loved. David Poland, writing for Movie City News, did not.
If you are looking for a war movie, you will be sadly disappointed. There is plenty of sepia-toned beach landing/gun fire/machine gun/grenade/flame throwing/body splitting stuff here. These battle sequences are episodic and uninspiring. It's almost like they went through books and found all the cool ways people died and placed them end to end. For about 20 minutes, it seems like we are watching a poor man's Saving Private Ryan. . .
But I will say this. Flags of Our Fathers is more than a disappointment. It is a bad movie. It's not a decent, flawed film that isn't a major Oscar movie, which something like Gangs of New York might have appeared to be or small, like Good Night and Good Luck might have seemed. It's not even like Crash, in which there was a line between lovers and haters that was as clear as the structural conceit of the film. There will be some good and even great reviews of this film. There always are for Eastwood movies. Blood Work had a 77% Cream of The Crop rating at Rotten Tomatoes… Space Cowboys, 88%.... even Absolute Power did 22% better in CotC than the overall ranking.
But this much is clear… there wasn't a wet eye in the house when I saw it. And there was no applause at either screening. And there may not be wild applause for a lot of films. But no applause for an alleged crowd rouser? The thing most likely to flag is your interest.