A strong and compelling story of brotherhood and familial bonding, Semper Fi is a model example of how to make a masculine film without the overboard elements that tend to cloud Hollywood movies about military personnel.
A police officer who serves in the Marine Corps Reserves is faced with an ethical dilemma when it comes to helping his brother in prison.
Half brothers Cal (Jai Courtney) and Oyster (Nat Wolff) are loyal to each other, despite years of difficult history after their parents passed away. Cal is a police officer and Marine Corps reservist who has taken care of Oyster, a volatile two-timer with a temper. They pal around with Cal’s Marine Corps buddies and stay on the razor’s edge of trouble while trying to keep a lid on Oyster’s antics. One night, Oyster gets into a bar fight he didn’t start, but he accidentally kills a guy with one punch, and gets arrested and sent to prison for 25 years due to his history. Plunging into guilt over not protecting his brother better, Cal plots to bust his brother out of prison during a prison transfer in a daring scheme that involves the help of his buddies. What could get them all sent to prison turns out to be the only hope Oyster has of ever seeing the light of day again.
A strong and compelling story of brotherhood and familial bonding, Semper Fi is a model example of how to make a masculine film without the overboard elements that tend to cloud Hollywood movies about military personnel. This one works because the casting is right, and the direction by co-writer Henry Alex Rubin is sensitive and yet daring enough to be authentic. The actors all nicely convey complicated characters, and even the understated score by Hanna Townshend is good.
The recently released blu ray of Semper Fi comes with deleted scenes, a making-of feature, an audio commentary by the director, and “A Battle of Honor: Where Devotion Lie,” another supplement.