Come Out Fighting Review: A Flawed But Appreciated Account Of The 761st Tank Battalion

go out fighting highlights the courage and heroism of black soldiers during World War II. The despicable racism he faced at home reared its ugly head for him on the European battlefields during the war. The film is a fictional account of the 761st Tank Battalion, also known as the Black Panthers. They join the search for a downed pilot and a missing officer trapped behind enemy lines. Moments of genuine camaraderie are marred by low-budget visual effects, questionable editing, and ill-defined generic Nazi antagonists. go out fighting it means well, but it struggles to be moving and cinematic.


Lieutenant Frank Ross (Kellan Lutz) checks the fuel gauge on his P-51 Mustang fighter. He is almost empty. Wingman Lt. Mike Rawlings (Andrew Stecker) finds himself in the same situation. They decide to end their reconnaissance mission when a German supply train shows up. The pilots diligently destroy the enemy, but do not see a Messerschmitt jet rushing towards them.

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Meanwhile, on nearby ground, Lt. Robert Hayes (Hiram A. Murray) leads a squad of black combat engineers. His job is to clear minefields and a path for the troops to advance. Sergeant AJ ‘Red’ McCarron (Michael Jai White) comments that they are always in the back after doing the dangerous work up front. A white officer assures Hayes that the sector ahead has been scouted. He finds out it’s a lie when they are ambushed by Nazi tanks.


Falling into a German trap

Cast of Come Out Fighting
lionsgate

Hayes leads the effort to repel the attack. He recommends Red for an officer battlefield commission. Commander Anderson (Dolph Lundgren) delivers bad news. He blames Hayes for falling into the German trap. He is to be immediately sent to division headquarters for a debriefing and possible reprimand. Red is placed in bitter command in his absence.

Hayes’ journey doesn’t go very far. The Germans attack again and decimate the convoy. Red’s men hear his call for help on the radio, but Anderson is unable to authorize a rescue operation. Red will not abandon Hayes. He gains a formidable ally with the introduction of Sgt. Warran Crecy (Tyrese Gibson). The soldiers of the 761st and their tanks have been itching for a fight.

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go out fighting works on a personal level. Hayes, Red, and their devoted men support each other above all else. White soldiers spit on them and disrespect them continuously because they consider them inferior. Prejudice taints their achievements with Hayes’s false accusations. It is entirely believable that Red disobeyed orders to abandon his dear friend. These scenes are a stark reminder of the disgusting treatment they face as they fight for America as second-class citizens.

faulty action

Writer/director Steven Luke (The last son, war pigs) reteams with Murray and Lundgren after underwater thriller operation sea lion. His efforts in the WWII genre are equally flawed. The CGI visual effects are not realistic. You can’t build serious tension if the wrestlers’ combat seems too computerized. This is obviously a budget issue, but play with scope and expectations. Luke wants a big scale. He uses the willing suspension of disbelief as a crutch for a major flawed action. That doesn’t work if open flight feels like a video game.

go out fighting left me conflicted. Luke’s depiction of brave black soldiers is appreciated. His contributions to World War II have been largely forgotten and willfully ignored. The 761 deserves to have its story told. Unfortunately, the movie is a mediocre vehicle.

go out fighting is a Lionsgate, Redbox, Schuetzle Company Productions and VMI Worldwide production. It will have a limited theatrical and VOD release on May 19 from Screen Media Films.

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