I am tempted to expound on the reactions to "Fifty Shades Of Grey" by people who have not seen the movie or read the book. I have not seen nor read and neither is a priority right now but I will address the condemnation at a later time.
For now, I will discuss "American Sniper." Cabin fever got the best of me and I raced out on a Sunday evening to view AS. It reminds me a bit like "Titanic" in that it appeals to both sexes. "Titanic" started out as a love story but ultimately morphed into an adventure film. The perfect date.
There are a dozen ways to tell the Chris Kyle story and all in all Clint Eastwood did a great job. I liked the battle scenes much more than the domestic scenes but there was a certain honesty there that was touching. Chris Kyle married a girl he met in a bar and in many respects they were average people. Watching the movie I felt like these were people with feelings, not actors with technique. Nothing schmaltzy here.
One way I measure movies is by how much my mind wanders. The older I get the more my focus wanes during movies. I attribute that more to the movie makers than to my concentration. I often feel like I have already seen the movie because the work on the screen has borrowed liberally from other films. This is especially true in this golden age of remakes. I found "American Sniper" engaging. My mind did not drift off to my endless To Do List or preparations for the weekly schedule. Roger Ebert described the state as an out of body experience. Quite a different event than what Robert Monroe described as an out of body experience. I experienced an OBE in the Ebert sense of the term. Mission accomplished.
I wish there were more movies like "American Sniper."