Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
1 hour 52 minutes
Cast: Tina Fey, Margot Robbie, Martin Freeman, Billy Bob Thornton
Any movie described as both a comedy and a war film sounds like an episode of Mash or Hogan’s Heroes. Nope. This comedy, war film is rated R for all the truth TO this story. When a group of reporters and photographers sign up for a stint in the midst of war there’s likely a lot of booze and sex to numb the danger they’ve been placed in.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot follows the story of fluff reporter Kim Baker (Tina Fey) who by default is tagged to go to Afghanistan and Pakistan to cover the news for her television network. Leaving her career driven boyfriend behind, she heads off to a world of political unrest navigating serious news for the first time in her career.
Watching Kim slowly move from “girl next door” who does the same safe routine day after day to an assertive journalist who wants the big story without getting killed or raped in the process is actually entertaining. As Kelly Clarkson sings “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” certainly applies here. For Kim Baker, it not only made her stronger but changes her perhaps for the better.
Tanya Vanderpoel (Margot Robbie) is thrilled to have a second female living among them and so are all the men in their house. All are members of the media from various countries like Iain MacKelpie (Martin Freeman) who has become almost numb to the high stress of covering the war. He also becomes smitten with the new girl on the block. Freeman is terrific in the role.
Billy Bob Thornton is hilarious as the tough ass General Hollanek. He plays his role as the seasoned military leader with just the right amount of irritation and empathy for this America woman trying to get the big story without losing her life.
I’m convinced that the dialogue MUST be authentic because it was a little too “inside baseball” for me and hard to track at times. Granted I embarrassed to admit that I have NOT been a diligent follower of the ins and outs of the War in Afghanistan. I only know enough to be dangerous. But even with a few missed sentences and names the story is fairly easy to follow and entertaining to watch.
I can’t say Whiskey Tango Foxtrot evoked a bunch of emotion. I laughed a little. Tina Fey was funny but she showed us a more serious side of her abilities. I never cried even when the characters did. I winced at a few bomb explosions but nothing really hit the heart strings very hard except some irritation at times. But even with its confusing storyline it kept my attention and even convinced me to like it by the time it was over.
Arruga! = 0 (R for a reason: violent, drug use, language) Fidget Factor = 0 (It’s odd but kept my attention)
Age Range = 16 and up
Overall Grade = C+