“Fury” is the name of the tank. It’s WWII, 1945, and though the crew looks beat down, America is making inroads in Germany. However, “Ideals are peaceful, history is violent” says Sgt. Collier (Brad Pitt) to the new guy, Norman (Logan Lerman). The poor kid was a clerk, and now he’s in the second gunner seat of a tank. The wide-eyed fear and horror is palpable on his face. But as the tank rolls through towns, takes out German battalions, we see him harden in this unflinching portrayal of war.
The guys have made it through Africa, France, and now Germany. They count on each other and especially on the sergeant. Pitt brings a quiet nobility to his role. He’s stalwart and commanding, and then he walks away and has his moment of fear/relief/ and utter exhaustion. Then he rallies and keeps his tank on the move. With a tank’s eye viewpoint, the director keeps us in the mud and in the middle of fire. It’s scary and claustrophobic.
“Fury” does not give us major history lessons, but it does show the endurance of war weary men. I give the film a B for making me care about the guys, for solid filmmaking, and for the tank perspective. The fury does build and unleash in many different ways.