Mighty Heart,a - Less Heart

Duration: 100min
Category: drama
Available: On DVD
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The Story of Daniel Pearl, the beheaded journalist whose plight captured the attention of the western world is tragic and the strength of his wife, Mariane Pearl, through the turmoil is admirable. I guess it was inevitable that there would be a movie made of this tale. However, there really isnít any story here. Nothing happens. Daniel is kidnapped and there is a great deal of talk about Middle Eastern politics and western/eastern relations and then we find out he has been murdered. Thatís the whole movie.

A Mighty Heart just doesnít hold our attention. Instead the film substitutes sympathy for plot. I guess the audience is to be sustained by their pity and horror. They arenít given any story to chew on or think about. Itís just a waiting game, waiting for the inevitable as we all know how it ends.

A Mighty Heart is the kind of film that gets made because someone sees Oscar in their future. Suffering wife in a touching story based on real events should be award season gold. Angelina Jolie does a good job with this to her credit. This could have turned into TV movie melodrama but she keeps her character in check through the entire film. Her performance is understated and remains a pivotal example of grace.

This is the other problem I have with the film, besides A Mighty Heart not having a story. No one gets to be real because the film is too busy extolling the virtues of Mariane Pearl. Sheís not a human being, sheís a pillar of strength and righteousness. The kidnappers arenít human beings either, they are cowardly evil doers. Even Daniel, who died for this story, isnít human. Heís the perfect husband, father, journalist. Everyone here is an idealized version of themselves.

There is very little insight into ďtruthĒ in A Mighty Heart. The film is too busy being a showcase for its star and praising its subject to be a film. I think a documentary into the effect this tragedy had on relations between the west and Islam would have been more engaging and a much greater legacy for the fallen than this attempt to milk drama out of the lives of the suffering. Less attempt at heart and more thought is what A Mighty Heart needs.

Review By: Collin Smith

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