Monday 7 August 2023

Reviewing The Messenger (2009) Movie - A Powerful Narrative of Loss and Redemption

Review: The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger Movie Poster

A Plot Summary

The Messenger is a war-drama movie released in 2009, directed by Oren Moverman. The film tells the story of two US Army officers, Will Montgomery (Ben Foster) and Tony Stone (Woody Harrelson), who are assigned to the Casualty Notification Service to deliver news of soldiers' deaths to their families. Will, a traumatized Iraq War veteran, initially struggles with the job but forms an unexpected bond with a widow, Olivia Pitterson (Samantha Morton).

Great Performances and Strong Themes

The Messenger's strength lies in its exceptional performances from its lead cast members. Ben Foster's portrayal of the broken-hearted Will delivers a powerful emotional punch. Woody Harrelson shines as Tony, a no-nonsense experienced officer that complements Will's tormented character. Samantha Morton also excels at portraying Olivia as the grieving widow who Will finds solace with.

Moreover, the movie's themes of grief, loss, and moving on are masterfully handled without being manipulative or heavy-handed. Director Oren Moverman uses the intimate and quiet scenes between the characters to explore these themes, resulting in a movie that resonates with the audience.

The Messenger is a poignant and thought-provoking movie that explores the harsh realities of war and how it affects individuals and families. Its powerful performances and strong themes make it an exceptional film that lingers in the mind long after it ends. Highly recommended for those who enjoy character-driven dramas with emotional depth.

Plot Summary Review: The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger movie poster

The Premise

The Messenger, directed by Oren Moverman, is a drama film that was released in 2009. The movie follows two soldiers, Staff Sergeant Montgomery (played by Ben Foster) and Specialist Will Montgomery (played by Woody Harrelson), who are part of the US Army's Casualty Notification service. They are tasked with delivering the news of soldiers' deaths to their next of kin.

The Plot

The story begins with Will, a soldier who has just returned from serving in Iraq and is now assigned to the Causality Notification team. He is partnered with Montgomery, who is experienced and becomes a mentor to Will. They have different approaches to the job, with Montgomery being more detached, while Will is empathetic and wants to provide comfort to the grieving families.

As they continue their job, they come across Olivia Pitterson (played by Samantha Morton), the wife of a fallen soldier. Will develops a complicated relationship with her, which leads to tension between him and Montgomery. There are also conflicts arising from Will's involvement in a personal problem, which significantly complicates matters.

Thoughts on the Movie

The Messenger is a powerfully emotional movie that provides a behind the scenes look into the aftermath of war. The film is not about war, but about the people who have been affected by it. It is about how they are left to deal with the loss of their loved ones, the effects of the trauma, and the difficulties they face moving forward.

The writing is exceptional, and the performances by the lead actors are beyond incredible. Woody Harrelson's portrayal of Will captures the character's turmoil and pain brilliantly, and Ben Foster's performance as Montgomery is equally commendable. Samantha Morton's performance as Olivia is also noteworthy.

The Verdict

The Messenger is a must-watch for anyone who appreciates thought-provoking cinema. It's a poignant, well-crafted film about grief, loss, and moving on. The combination of exceptional writing, direction, and acting results in a deeply emotional and engaging film. The Messenger is a movie that will stay with you long after you've watched it.

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Characters and their backgrounds Review The Messenger (2009) Movie

Characters and their backgrounds Review The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger is a movie that focuses on the lives of two soldiers who are tasked with notifying families about the death of their loved ones during the Iraq war. The main characters in the movie are Will Montgomery (Ben Foster) and Tony Stone (Woody Harrelson). Will is a wounded hero, who has just arrived back from Iraq, while Tony is a veteran who has been in the Notification Service for years.

We are given a glimpse into the personal lives of these characters through their backgrounds. Will is dealing with a break-up from his girlfriend, and his injury has prevented him from continuing to serve as a soldier. Tony, on the other hand, is struggling with his past experiences in the military, which have left him bitter and distant.

The backgrounds of the characters help to add depth and complexity to the story. They are not just soldiers carrying out a duty, but real people who are dealing with their own personal issues. This makes the characters relatable and gives them a sense of humanity, which is often forgotten in war movies.

As the movie progresses, we see the characters interact with the families of the deceased soldiers, and the emotional toll it takes on them. The movie showcases the grief and pain that these families go through, and how difficult it is to deliver such news. Will, who is new to the job, struggles to come to terms with the enormity of the situation, while Tony is the one who has to hold it together for both of them.

Overall, The Messenger is a poignant and touching movie that showcases the human side of war and its consequences. The characters and their backgrounds add much-needed depth and emotion, making it a must-watch for anyone interested in war movies.

Setting and Location Review of The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger (2009)

The Movie's Setting

The Messenger (2009) movie is set in a contemporary America, where the United States Army is still fighting in Iraq. The majority of the movie is set in a small town in suburban America. The town is full of middle-class American residents who are oblivious to the ongoing conflict in Iraq, a theme that the movie addresses with its characters.

The Location of the Movie

While the town serves as the primary location, there are several other locations used throughout the movie. The audience is taken on a tour of the surrounding countryside and rural areas. The wide-open spaces and quiet surroundings provide a strong contrast to the busy suburban environment of the town, highlighting the isolation of the townspeople from the ongoing war.

The Impact of the Setting and Location on the Movie's Themes

The setting and location of the movie have a great impact on the themes that the movie tackles. The quiet and tranquil surroundings of the countryside provide a contrast to the busy American suburban atmosphere. Similarly, the oblivious nature of the town's inhabitants is in contrast to the ongoing war in the Middle East. The movie effectively highlights the impact of war on soldiers and their families, and how it affects the ignorance of everyday citizens who go about their lives, oblivious to the struggles of others.

In conclusion, the setting and location of The Messenger (2009) movie play a critical role in highlighting the themes and message of the movie. It provides a contrast between the peaceful suburban setting and the ongoing conflict in Iraq, and how it affects everyone involved. The movie also emphasizes the importance of understanding and acknowledging the struggles of others, even when they are not immediately apparent.

Cinematography and Visual Effects Review of The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Plot

The Messenger (2009) is a war drama movie that follows the story of two army officers who are tasked with delivering the news of soldiers' deaths to their families. While it may seem like a simple plot, the movie delivers a powerful message that is brought to life through its cinematography and visual effects.

The Cinematography

The Messenger (2009) features outstanding cinematography that captures the harsh realities of war. The camera work is steady, with slow tracking shots that add a sense of gravitas to the movie. The use of muted colors and dim lighting further emphasizes the somber tone of the film. The cinematography expertly captures the raw emotions of the characters, adding depth and authenticity to their performances.

The Visual Effects

The visual effects in The Messenger (2009) are subtle yet effective. The movie uses various techniques to convey the passing of time and the changing of seasons. The use of sound effects and visual cues show the progression of time without interrupting the flow of the story. The special effects are seamlessly integrated into the movie, adding to its overall authenticity.

The Verdict

The Messenger (2009) is a movie that is well worth watching, due in no small part to its brilliant cinematography and understated visual effects. The film's authenticity, powerful message, and outstanding performances make it a must-see for any movie fan. It's a somber reminder of the price paid for freedom and a tribute to the sacrifices made by military personnel and their families.

Sound and Music Review The Messenger (2009) Movie

Movie The Messenger

Sound and Music Overview

The Messenger is a 2009 American war drama film that was directed by Oren Moverman. The screenplay was co-written by Moverman and Alessandro Camon. The film is a deeply affecting portrayal of the emotional and psychological wounds of war. The sound and music score of this film plays a vital role in heightening the emotions that the film conveys. J. Ralph composed the original score for the film, while Ryan Bingham’s haunting, Oscar-winning track “The Weary Kind serves as its centerpiece.

Sound and Music Contribution

The sound and music in The Messenger truly enhance the film’s narrative. The film’s sound designer, Damian Volpe, was able to create a raw and authentic atmosphere that immerses the audience in the heart-wrenching scenes. J. Ralph’s original score perfectly complements and underscores the characters’ emotions, while Ryan Bingham’s “The Weary Kind captures the tragedy and heartbreak of the soldiers’ experiences.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the sound and music in The Messenger amplifies its powerful story, making it a thought-provoking and emotionally charged film. It beautifully captures the realities of war and its impact on the individuals involved. The Messenger’s sound and music score adds another layer to the film’s narrative, making it a must-see for anyone who appreciates quality sound design and scoring in film.

In conclusion, The Messenger is a well-written and well-directed movie that depicts the emotional turmoil of soldiers returning home in a realistic and poignant way. The sound and music in this film play a significant role in adding depth to the movie’s narrative. With its haunting score and sound design, the Messenger leaves an unforgettable impact on its viewers.

Themes and Messages Conveyed in "The Messenger" (2009) Movie

The Messenger movie poster


"The Messenger" is a 2009 movie that explores the experiences of two U.S. Army officers, played by Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson, who are tasked with delivering death notifications to the families of fallen soldiers. The movie delves deep into themes like grief, loss, and the psychological impact of war on soldiers and their loved ones.

Themes and Messages

One of the central themes of the movie is the emotional toll that war takes on soldiers and their families. Through the eyes of the two officers, viewers are exposed to the pain and suffering that comes from losing a loved one in combat. The movie also explores issues of guilt and trauma, as both officers struggle to come to terms with their own experiences in the military.

Another important message conveyed in the movie is the importance of empathy and compassion. Despite the difficult nature of their job, the officers are portrayed as deeply empathetic individuals who are committed to delivering the news of a loved one's death with sensitivity and care.

The movie also addresses the broader societal impact of war, particularly on civilians. Through the interactions between the officers and the families they visit, viewers are given a window into the ways in which wars impact individuals and communities in profound ways.

Overall, "The Messenger" is a powerful and emotionally charged movie that explores important themes and messages related to war, loss, and human connection. Through its sensitive portrayal of the impact of death notifications on soldiers and their families, the movie delivers a powerful reminder of the human cost of war.

Critical Reception and Reviews of The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger (2009) is a drama film directed by Oren Moverman which tells the story of two soldiers assigned to notify families of the deaths of their loved ones during the Iraq War. The movie was well-received by critics and audiences alike, earning an 89% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 77% score on Metacritic.

Many critics praised the performances of the lead actors, Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote, "Foster and Harrelson bring out the best in each other... The acting is extraordinary". Peter Travers of Rolling Stone also praised the two actors, calling their performances "magnificent".

The film's raw portrayal of grief and loss touched many viewers. Ann Hornaday of The Washington Post stated, "The Messenger is an unforgettable elegy to the human costs of war". Manohla Dargis of The New York Times called it "an affecting drama about the casualties of war, both living and dead."

While some critics found the film slow-moving and at times emotionally manipulative, most agreed that it was a powerful and thought-provoking film about a difficult subject matter. The Messenger was also nominated for two Academy Awards, including Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor for Woody Harrelson.

Overall, The Messenger (2009) is a poignant and emotionally charged film which left a lasting impact on both critics and audiences alike.

Box Office Performance and Awards Won Review: The Messenger (2009) Movie

Box office performance and awards won Review: The Messenger (2009) Movie

The Messenger, a 2009 movie directed by Oren Moverman, is known for its powerful storytelling and emotional performances. The movie is about two soldiers, played by Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson, who work in the Casualty Notification Office. They are tasked with informing families that their loved ones have been killed while serving their country. Nominated for two Academy Awards, The Messenger has won numerous awards and has received critical acclaim.

In terms of box office performance, The Messenger had a limited release but managed to gross over $1.1 million worldwide. Despite its modest earnings, the movie's powerful performances and poignant story made it a success among critics and audiences alike.

The Messenger was also recognized for its impressive performances, with Woody Harrelson earning an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. The movie also won Best Screenplay at the Independent Spirit Awards, and was nominated for Best First Feature and Best Supporting Male.

Apart from its commercial success and critical recognition, The Messenger is praised for its honest portrayal of the emotional toll of war and is considered an important and thought-provoking film about the human cost of conflict.

In conclusion, The Messenger may not have been a box office smash hit, but it is a critically acclaimed movie that succeeded in its storytelling and performances. The movie's recognition at award shows and its continued relevance in discussions about war and its impact on families is a testament to its lasting impact. It's a must-watch for anyone looking for a powerful and moving film experience.

Conclusion Review The Messenger (2009) Movie

Conclusion review The Messenger (2009) movie

"The Messenger" is a thought-provoking and emotional film that tackles the difficult subject of death and grief. Directed by Oren Moverman, this 2009 movie stars Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson as two soldiers who are tasked with notifying families of the death of their loved ones in the Iraq war.

The film does an excellent job of showing how difficult this job is for the soldiers, as they have to deal with angry and inconsolable family members while grappling with their own emotions and guilt. The performances from Foster and Harrelson are outstanding, and they bring a sense of authenticity and rawness to their roles that is truly remarkable.

Overall, "The Messenger" is a powerful and affecting film that will stay with you long after the credits roll. It's a reminder of the sacrifices that soldiers make in the line of duty, and the devastating impact that war can have on both the soldiers and their families. If you're looking for a meaningful and poignant movie to watch, "The Messenger" is definitely worth checking out.

In conclusion, "The Messenger" is a film that captures the essence of war and its toll on those who serve. The performances by Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson are first-rate, and the story is both heart-wrenching and inspiring. This movie is a must-see for anyone who wants to gain a deeper understanding of the complexities of war and its impact on soldiers and their loved ones.

The Messenger (2009) Movie Review

The Messenger (2009) is a drama film that portrays the lives of two U.S. Army soldiers assigned to the Army's Casualty Notification service. The movie follows the story of Sergeant Will Montgomery (played by Ben Foster) and Captain Tony Stone (played by Woody Harrelson) as they inform families of the deaths of their loved ones in Iraq.

The movie displays the harsh realities of war and how it affects not only the soldiers but also their families. The Messenger is a poignant and emotive portrayal of the sorrow and pain that comes with losing a loved one. It showcases the emotional rollercoaster and strain that the soldiers go through when delivering the news and the aftermath that follows.

The acting in The Messenger is nothing short of phenomenal. Woody Harrelson and Ben Foster both deliver outstanding performances as the main characters. They portray the emotions of their characters – the coping mechanisms and the sense of responsibility – with rawness and authenticity that makes you feel like you are part of the story.

The pacing of the movie is just right, and it manages to maintain a balance of drama and humor. This balance is uncommon for similar movies in its genre yet makes it stand out even more among them.

The Messenger is more than just a war movie as it delves into the human psyche in desperate situations. Its message is that we should always cherish our time with our loved ones and never take them for granted. This movie is a reminder that the consequences of war impact not just soldiers, but their families, friends, and everyone involved.

In conclusion, I highly recommend The Messenger. It is an emotionally charged and thought-provoking movie that you would not want to miss.

Until we meet again, please share this review with your friends and family.

Review The Messenger (2009) Movie