Patriots Day is a drama-thriller movie film about the April 15, 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and the events of its aftermath, including how the terrorists behind it were identified and caught through the combined efforts of the Boston police, Watertown police, FBI, and the Boston community as a whole.
The movie centers on the character of Sgt. Tommy Saunders (Mark Wahlberg), a fictional character that serves as a composite of several Boston cops that were on site during the event and the subsequent manhunt. Also featured in the film are the real-life people involved in the case, including Boston Police Commissioner (Ed Davis), Watertown Police Sergeant Jeffrey Pugliese (J.K. Simmons), and FBI Special Agent Richard DesLauriers (Kevin Bacon). The Tsarnaev brothers, the terrorists responsible for the bombings, are played by Alex Wolf and Themo Melikidze, and Melissa “Supergirl” Benoist has a minor participation as the wife of one of the terrorists.
I’ve always had some fascination for Boston as it’s depicted in pop culture. There’s just something about how the city’s culture, close-knittedness, Irish roots, and distinctive accent that makes it so enamoring. And Patriots Day is a very “Bostonian” movie, especially with its subject matter and with Wahlberg at the lead. But what makes it a great one is how it paints a strong sense of oneness, resiliency, and courage in the Boston community during that dark period.
Coming off of Deepwater Horizon, Peter Berg succeeds once again with Patriots Day in translating to the big screen a recent tragedy in an investing, thrilling, and heart-rending manner, while at the same time, making it the respectful tribute that such tragic event entails. If this is the path that Berg wants to take in his filmmaking career, well then, good for him. He really knows how to make this stuff. Personally, I find this kind of movies very “must-watch”, since though I’ve remembered seeing and reading these happenings in the news, the movies do provide a more comprehensive and powerful narrative for them.
All in all, I find Patriots Day a very riveting movie, as well as a very inspiring one.