Movie ReviewsCanada F*ck Yeah! (Hyena Road Review)

Keith NoakesOctober 10, 2015

Ryan (Rossif Sutherland) is a Canadian sniper who tries not to think of his targets as human. He’s also in love with his colleague, Jennifer (Christine Horne) who together try to lessen the constant danger that comes with their jobs. When Ryan and his team Travis, Hickie, and Tank (Allan Hawco, David Richmond-Peck, and Karl Campbell) are surrounded by the enemy, they take refuge in a small village. In this village, they meet a legendary former mujahid known as the Ghost (Neamat Arghandabi), who saves their lives. When Ryan tells intelligence officer Pete (Paul Gross) about him, Pete insists on meeting him. He agrees to help them but the kidnapping of two girls from his village threatens to complicate their mission.

If you didn’t know already, I am a Canadian. This film depicts (more or less) our army. Maybe it exaggerates the level of our involvement in Afghanistan but it probably would have been a very boring film otherwise. I have seen a lot of war films but I don’t think that I have seen any Canadian war films (because all of the others are predominately American) so this would be a first for me. It ultimately makes no difference what country the film comes from. For a war film, the story isn’t too original here so don’t expect any surprises in this one. I found the pacing in this one to be a little weird where character seemed to alternate between being out of their base and engaging Taliban and being within the base and just talking to each other about things. I was hoping for a little more fighting because the moments when the characters were within the base to be quite boring because I did not particularly care about the characters besides the character of Pete played by Paul Gross since I thought he had the most depth when compared to all of the other characters who had little to no depth and I enjoyed his interactions with his Afghani friend Abdul (Hekmat Bavari). It’s funny that this is the case seeing that Paul Gross wrote and directed the film. I thought the war scenes were well done in that they were well shot and I liked the sound design involved. They also did a good job capturing the tension involved with being a sniper and the uncertainty after things went wrong (and they sometimes did). Despite the base scenes being boring and not caring about most of the characters, I still thought Rossif Sutherland was okay as Ryan, albeit being cliche almost the entire time. Christine Horne as Jennifer was okay but I didn’t think her character was necessary to the story (except for something I will not spoil) as it did not add anything to it and her relationship with Ryan did not work seeing that they had no chemistry together. What annoyed me was during certain scenes involving conversations between Afghani characters, there were no subtitles so I had no idea what they were saying. The only time I did was when there was a translator in the scene. I found the tone of the film drastically changed near the end which did not make sense to me. Overall. this comes nowhere near the great war films but it should moderately entertain.

Score: 6.5/10

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