GREYHOUND, which was originally supposed to have a release to theaters this summer until a certain pandemic hit our planet, will instead make its way to Apple TV+ as an Apple Originals release. In a way this is a bit on the sad side as this WWII actioner is a big screen experience with incredible cinematography and visuals and a strong lead performance by everyone’s favourite actor Tom Hanks. It also has a much more lean, near genre-movie vibe to it as well, which is a bit surprising in comparison to the recent MIDWAY which I felt was a little overloaded with too many visuals but not holding my interest.
Hanks plays US Navy Commander Ernest Krause who has taken charge of the navy destroyer of the film’s title. His main job is to safely navigate his ship and 36 others to safety across waters that are consistently under the threat of enemy attack. Throughout, you feel Krause’s struggle as the war looms on his crew and ships.
And that’s really most of the setup. You can either go in with a WWII, war-buff attitude and pick apart the details OR you can just take it as an action thrill ride. Most of what makes it work is Tom Hanks himself, who makes you believe everything that is happening, right in the moment, and the experience is just keeping up with all of the insanely quick action. Not much weight is given to most of the characters around Krause, but one of the elements of GREYHOUND that surprisingly works is its simplicity. In just 92 minutes (or 83 minutes without end credits), the story is lean and borderline genre filmmaking.
The director is Aaron Schneider, who shockingly hasn’t made a movie since GET LOW (a solid quasi-indie he made with Bill Murray, Robert Duvall and an all-star cast about a decade ago) but has a real knack for editing and visual storytelling. I really hope he makes more movies and at a faster pace than this.
Overall, GREYHOUND is something I would LOVE to see on a big wide scope screen with a thunderous cinema sound system, as these types of stories are best suited for the format. But in this day and age, that’s more of a dream than a reality, so a 4k digital presentation on streaming will have to do for now.
Rating: *** out of ****
GREYHOUND is now streaming on Apple TV+.