Patriots Day: Thriller revisits Boston bombing

(Standing, left to right) Kevin Bacon, Mark Wahlberg and John Goodman in PATRIOTS DAY to be released by CBS Films and Lionsgate. Photo credit: Karen Ballard.

Patriots Day takes us behind the scenes of the week that followed the Boston bombing in April 2013.

Directed by Peter Berg, Mark Wahlberg stars as a Boston Police officer who was one of the first to respond to the attack at the Boston Marathon finish line. Wahlberg is joined by Kevin Bacon, John Goodman, J.K. Simmons, and Michelle Monaghan.

The screenplay was penned by Berg & Matt Cook and Joshua Zetumer and was based on a story by Berg & Cook and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson.

Patriots Day shows how the city of Boston came together to capture the suspects. It was a rare time in which the entire city was shut down so as to be able to allow the police to go on a manhunt.

In the four days that followed the attack, a task force of over 1,000 federal, state, and local law enforcement officers came together to recreate the scene, ho through the evidence, and find the suspects. On April 18th, after a hostage escaped, the entire city shutdown for a manhunt. This was unprecedented in American history and the manhunt took them to Watertown, where the oldest of the two brothers was fatally wounded. The younger one would be taken into custody the next night when someone notices something strange about their boat.

The film’s script is drawn from the experiences of people such as the first responders, hospital workers, law enforcement investigators, government officials, everyday citizens, and the actual survivors. It’s very fitting that the film concludes with David Ortiz’ speech as the real people are shown on screen.

Berg describes the film as being “about civic heroism, strength and resilience in the face of evil, a story that demanded to be told.”

It was important to everyone involved that they get the story right. It hasn’t even been a complete four years and the events depicted in the film are still fresh in people’s memory. About 70% of the movie was filmed in the actual locations in which the events transpired.

While the movie strives for accuracy, Sgt. Tommy Saunders is a combination of real-life police officers and first responders. I can understand why they opted to go this route.

Patriots Day is a day that honors the memory of the battles of Concord and Lexington, the first battle of the American Revolution. On the 3rd Monday of every April, the Boston Marathon is run and Fenway Park is packed. In 2013, there were three people killed and 264 injured.

CBS Films and Lionsgate opened the film in limited release on December 21, 2016, before going wide on January 13, 2017.

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.

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