'71 | Salt Lake City Weekly
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  Rated R · 99 minutes · 2014

Action, Thriller
Somewhere on the continuum between “spells absolutely everything out” and “bordering on incomprehensible”—nearer to the latter than to the former—is this “come on, throw us a bone” narrative. Jack O’Connell (Unbroken) plays Pvt. Gary Hook, a British soldier circa 1971 deployed to Belfast, Northern Ireland, and who finds himself left behind by his unit in a city where plenty of people want him dead. Director Yann Demange keeps up a propulsive pace as Hook tries to stay alive, with a particular burst of energy when Hook finds assistance from a hard-nosed young Protestant boy. But while trying to portray a place where even people who are supposed to be on the same side are at each other’s throats, screenwriter Gregory Burke tangles his story such that it’s often hard to understand who’s trying to kill whom, and why. And Hook himself is little more than a cipher of innocence, with a backstory too enigmatic to make an impression. When he throws away his dog tags, as though symbolically starting a new life, it would have helped to really understand much of anything about his old one.
Staff Rating:
Director: Yann Demange
Producer: Robin Gutch, Angus Lamont, Sam Lavender, Tessa Ross, Dan Macrae, Danny Perkins, Hugo Heppell, Mark Herbert, Lizzie Francke and Leslie Finlay
Cast: Jack O'Connell, Paul Anderson, Sean Harris, Richard Dormer, Barry Keoghan, Martin McCann, Charlie Murphy, Sam Reid, Killian Scott, David Wilmot, Jack Lowden and Jim Sturgeon

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