Most of the work Clint Eastwood puts out is pretty much universally loved. That’s usually because he makes damn fine movies. American Sniper, however, has not enjoyed the kind of widespread praise the rest of his filmography receives.
American Sniper was Clint Eastwood‘s attempt at dissecting the war on terror by bringing the real-life story of Chris Kyle to the big screen. One of the best Clint Eastwood movies, it is not, but it does get a bit of a bad rap. Its thematic elements are problematic, to say the least, and let’s not forget that hilariously fake baby Bradley Cooper holds. American Sniper does have some cool visual work, though, and the story, while thorny, is still a commentary worth examining.
Tackling such a controversial issue as the Iraq War was never going to be easy and was always likely to upset people. The way the film glorifies Kyle, dubbed the deadliest marksman in US military history for his 255 kills during action, doesn’t help matters.
Nevertheless, whether you regard this as one of the best war movies of recent years, or consider it a messy jumble of violence and misplaced idolization, American Sniper is getting something right. At least, if you look at the Netflix charts, it is.
Funnily enough, it’s in the UK that American Sniper is enjoying something of a revival in fortunes, as the film currently sits in the top five on the platform. So, despite everything new on Netflix this month that audiences could watch, this troublesome tale of American patriotism is flying high across the Atlantic.
Could American Sniper end up finding itself among the best movies based on a true story? Probably not, but pulling in a big audience on the best streaming service is never a bad thing. And, let’s not forget American Sniper was nominated for six Oscars back in 2015, though it won just one of those, for Sound Editing.
For more from the streaming service, here’s our guide to all the secret Netflix codes, and a look at the best Netflix series you can stream right now. If you like American Sniper, you should know that the best HBO series ever made is now streaming on Netflix, too. Or, find out how Bradley Cooper tried to save Clint Eastwood $100,000 dollars on American Sniper. For a more purist take on heroism, however, you may be more inclined to look ahead to Superman Legacy or The Marvels.