Whiskey Tango Foxtrot *SPOILER ALERT* Review
Comedy writer extraordinaire Tina Fey takes on the role of foreign correspondent Kim Barker after reading the real life Kim Barker being compared to herself in a review about Kim's book 'The Taliban Shuffle'. It only seemed right for her to star as Kim Barker and also produce the film with directorial duo Glenn Ficarra and John Requa at the helms; who gave us Crazy, Stupid, Love. and most recently Focus. We find Kim bored and lost working for a news network who gets quickly pushed out to Kabul, Afghanistan as a war journalist because of her marital status and not because of her experience and talent, which is zero. Leaving behind her boyfriend (Josh Charles from S.W.A.T. and Dead Poets Society) and plants to find gunfire, sand and plenty of bottled water; what was suppose to be a few months soon becomes a couple of years. Welcome the culture shock and getting lost in translation, Kim's character is nothing less than brave or stupid, going on patrols with the marines under the protective eye of Billy Bob Thornton's Gen. Hollanek. Who is amazing at speaking friendly fire and shouting about monetary values of missiles and Toyota pick-ups. He honestly has the best lines in the film and no, I didn't come here for the smell of sweaty balls. It has an amazing cast though a little confusing and possibly off putting with Martin Freeman with an Scottish accent. Alfred Molina is typically brilliant, Margot Robbie is typically stunning but it's Christopher Abbott's Fahim that is outstanding, Kim's Afghan guide and eventual friend. Home & Away Aussie star Stephen Peacocke (looks like a hench, taller version of Hugh Grant) plays a Canadian pretending to be a Kiwi, like, yeah... Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? It's funny, entertaining and borderline outrageous, but has a seriousness constantly ticking below the surface like an IED that blows toward the end of the film, and instead of hitting the topics like sexism, feminism and war politics direct, we get little bits of golden shrapnel from time to time. It has a good, mixed soundtrack including music from The National, House of Pain, Pharcyde and Iron & Wine with an almost surreal use of Harry Nilsson's 'Without You'. Not forgetting to mention a beautifully score from Nick Urata. It's superbly scripted, well directed and doesn't lose momentum. It's certainly not a four-ten-four but more like an... 8!
Running Time: 7
The Cast: 9
Job Description: 9
The Extra Bonus Point: 10 for Billy Bob Thornton's lines and Christopher Abbott's Fahim.