fact that the idea carries with it some potentially serious political baggage, it is
not that much of a stretch to imagine that if George W. Bush continues his
policy of war as a diplomatic strategy then eventually it may be necessary to
resurrect the draft in the United States.
takes that consideration and pushes it a step farther. Forget what if
– what will happen when this comes to pass?
its points by focusing on three friends – played by Elijah Wood (The
Lord of the Rings), Chris Klein (American Pie) and Jon Bernthal
(best known for last season's short-lived-but-heavily-hyped sitcom
to the continuing Middle East conflict (the film doesn't really specify if
it is Iraq, Afghanistan, or possibly Iran or some other upcoming skirmish)
the draft is reinstated, all three are given thirty days before reporting to
duty. They have this little time to clear up their affairs, say
goodbye to their loved ones and come to terms with their fears.
have known each other since childhood, but now since grown in different
directions – in terms of career, stature and responsibilities, as well as
financial and political differences. The three buddies have stayed
close over the years but none of them is sure why they have – other than a
long ago bond. All are very well aware of their significant
(Klein) is riding high as a corporate lawyer, with a beautiful wife, a
powerful former-politician father and a high-powered job. He is rather
ambivalent about the war, but tends to be against it.
(Wood) is the tortured artist of the group who had published a respected
book but now is spending most of his time at his psychiatrist's (Ally Sheedy)
complaining about his complete inability to finish a follow-up. He is
horrified by the idea of war and can't imagine ever going.
there is Dixon, the tough kid who took care of everything for the friends as
a child. Now however, his life is going nowhere. He lives in the
same neighborhood and works as a cabbie. He feels it is their duty to
fight terrorism wherever it appears.
plays with the core beliefs of the friends. The gung-ho war friend
meets a sweet neighborhood teacher (Elisabeth Moss of The West Wing)
and suddenly realizes that maybe he has something to lose by going to the
Middle East. The lawyer's wife (Ginnifer Goodwin) has contracted
cancer, making his desire not to go to war become an obsession not to leave
his wife. In the meantime, the shy pacifist sort of goes completely
off the deep end – throwing himself into a world of sex for sale and
danger, until a humiliating confrontation with a pimp turns him into Travis Bickle.
The politics and melodrama
of Day Zero is a bit more simplistic than the filmmakers undoubtedly
meant them to be. It sometimes skirts the issues rather than meeting
them head on. Several of the plot points feel a little predictable. However, it is an intriguing look at
a complicated issue.
Jay S. Jacobs
Copyright ©2008 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved.
Posted: January 10, 2008.