Gripping military dramas based on true events have proven to be a very popular subgenre in Hollywood throughout the 21st Century, although the results have been decidedly mixed. The Hurt Locker found plenty of awards season glory while Zero Dark Thirty, Lone Survivor and Black Hawk Down scored solid box office business and enthusiastic reviews, but lying at the other end of the spectrum are the painfully mediocre likes of Michael Bay’s 13 Hours and Chris Hemsworth vehicle 12 Strong.
The latest entry, however, is one of the very best yet, and it didn’t even manage to get a theatrical release. Rod Lurie’s The Outpost hit VOD and digital in July, and quietly gained a reputation as one of the year’s most underrated movies. The hard hitting and authentic adaptation of a 2012 non-fiction book that told the story of Operation Enduring Freedom’s Battle of Kamdesh presents a relentlessly tense and often painfully realistic depiction of an American unit forced to battle an overwhelming number of enemy insurgents.
The Outpost proved hugely popular when it first became available, topping the sales charts on numerous platforms, and now that the movie has been added to Netflix’s content library, it’s rocketed up the service’s Top 10 list. Enola Holmes has finally been knocked from the number one slot by true crime documentary American Murder: The Family Next Door, with The Outpost currently the second most popular film on the platform in the US.
That’s an impressive showing for an action-heavy military thriller that a lot of subscribers wouldn’t have even been aware of until recently, but as one of the best movies of 2020 so far, The Outpost certainly deserves to be seen by as many people as possible.