Film Review: War Dogs

XO Rating

10 Plot
10 Casting
8 Cinematography
9 Experience

Director: Todd Phillips

Writer: Stephen Chin

Cast: Miles Teller, Jonah Hill, Steve Lantz, Bradley Cooper

David Packouz (Teller) is a young man with ambition but very little direction. Still, in his twenties, David has his whole life ahead of him jumping from job to job barely scraping by. When the universe puts more responsibility on his plate than he can handle David’s best friend Efraim Diveroli (Hill) offers him the opportunity of a lifetime. In less than a year, David goes from massage therapist and part-time entrepreneur to International arms dealer. Globetrotting with and making money with your best friend by your side seems like the good life. However, David soon learns that nothing that comes easy is meant to last and easy money comes with the hardest sacrifices.

war dogs

War Dogs is a dramatic and often comedic interpretation of the very real story of David Packouz and Efraim Diveroli. Their fascinating story highlights the very real business of war as well as the holes in the U.S government’s procurement process. How two young men with very little experience end up providing weapons to our soldiers is a story you must see to believe. Teller’s portrayal of Packouz shows him as endearing gullible and instantly likable. From the start, he is a workhorse always looking for the next big break. Your heart nearly breaks for him as he misses holidays and the simple life while chasing the American Dream. Hill’s Diveroli steals most of the scenes with his humor and undeserved swagger. No one delivers loveable douchebag quite like Jonah Hill. Unlike most of his roles, Diveroli takes Hill into some dark territory, catapulting him from goofball to villain in just a few short scenes. We thoroughly enjoyed this film from start to finish. We recommend seeing this but waiting until after the credits to google the real story. Knowing all of the outcomes of the sticky situations will certainly take away from this enjoyable adventure.

war dogs

Though this film is about war, the action is minimal. There is one lone car chase in the film that finds Diveroli and Packouz in deep trouble but it is quickly resolved in the most satisfying way. The violence and insanity one would expect from a movie about war and weapons are non-existent and unnecessary. The script and story are solid enough not to need any Mission Impossible stunts. Like real War Dogs, Hill and Tiller leave the real fighting to the pros and deliver a solid film like expert salesmen with timing, wit, and heart.