“American Sniper” Masterfully Brings Chris Kyle Recognition and Honor

American Sniper Masterfully Brings Chris Kyle Recognition and Honor

By Paulina Michael

Chris Kyle’s moving autobiography is brought to cinematographic life by Bradley Cooper in “American Sniper.” Kyle was a Navy SEAL sniper overseas during post-9/11 times. During his four, brutal tours in Iraq, he was exposed to countless life or death situations and obstacles that challenged him physically and psychologically. His precision and accuracy allowed him to save numerous American lives, eventually earning him the nickname of the “legend.” Aside from his nickname on the field, he became widely known as “America’s most lethal sniper.”

He starts off pursuing his dream of being a cowboy in his home state of Texas, until he sees footage on the news of the terror attacks on 9/11. Afterwards he feels as though he’s not doing enough, or what he necessarily should be doing in life, in accordance with his deep patriotism. Kyle goes to an army recruiter the following day and stumbles upon the Navy SEALS, and decides to give it a shot. Enduring the brutality that is SEALs training, he makes his way overseas as a sniper and eventually earns his status as a top, dangerous American sniper.

Bradley Cooper portrays Kyle’s inevitably changing persona effectively throughout the entire film, from his prior cowboy self to his post-war PTSD moments, he really brings Kyle alive. The heartfelt details that were evidently incorporated into the film’s production made all the difference in reception of Kyle’s life. I read in an interview, prior to seeing the movie, that Chris Kyle’s wife had shared her intimate emails with Kyle when he was overseas to the actors in order to fully capture their relationship during and after his four tours. These are the small details that helped capture the true love that encompassed his life at home and overseas in battle.

The ending, although tragic, brought honor and sentiment to Kyle’s abrupt and unexpected death in 2013. The real footage from his funeral allowed the nature of the tragedy to truly set in with audience members. After building up a soft spot throughout the film for Kyle, having such an unexpected ending leaves the audience astounded, or at least that’s how I felt. Paired up with the footage, it left its mark on me and I definitely will not be forgetting Chris Kyle or his legacy.

5/5 stars.