The latest Netflix-made film delves into the war in Iraq when the Iraqis finally expelled ISIS from Mosul in 2017. The film shows the utter destruction and human cost of taking back from the terror of the Islamic State what was Iraq’s second-largest city.
Director Michael Carnahan’s film is dirty, bloody, and brutal. Mosul is completely smashed as if a nuclear explosion had razed it. The film is a grim reminder of how the Iraqis had to liberate the city one house at a time and in doing so, absolutely leveled it. The overhead shots that show the destruction look like they were taken straight out of news footage.
The film doesn’t ease the viewer into the action: it thrusts him right into the middle of a shootout between two Iraqi cops and a large number of ISIS fighters. Surrounded by dead and wounded cops and ISIS fighters, in a bullet-ridden shell of what appeared to be once a home or a small shop, the two cops are hopelessly outgunned but are hanging on until they run out of ammo.