The Wall | Chicago Reader

The Wall

Amid the 2007 surge of U.S. forces in Iraq, two soldiers (John Cena, Aaron Taylor-Johnson) are ambushed by a sniper during a routine surveillance mission in the desert; over the next several hours they attempt to locate the attacker while tending to severe gunshot wounds. Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity, Edge of Tomorrow) directed this terse little war movie, using widescreen cinematography to bring a sense of grandeur to the relatively simple story. It unfolds mainly from the perspective of Taylor-Johnson’s character, who gets trapped behind the wall of a bombed-out schoolhouse, and Liman is inventive in maintaining excitement while sticking to a narrow field of vision. This doesn't have much to say about the U.S. occupation of Iraq—it could have taken place during any modern military conflict—though as an exercise in suspense it delivers.



  • Doug Liman


  • Aaron Taylor-Johnson
  • John Cena
  • Laith Nakli


  • David Bartis
  • Ray Angelic

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