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Military Times Editor Writes Scathing Takedown of Roland Emmerich’s ‘Midway’

The Lionsgate release shocked the industry by topping the weekend box office with $17.5 million.




Roland Emmerich’s World War II action drama “Midway” surprised the industry by topping the weekend box office with a $17.5 million debut, a step up from projections that reported the film was heading for around $15 million. While the success of “Midway” was a win for Lionsgate (the studio also has “Knives Out” opening over Thanksgiving), the film was greeted with some of the worst film reviews of 2019. IndieWire senior film critic David Ehrlich called “Midway” bland in his C- review, but that’s nothing compared to the fury the film elicited out of Military Times writer and editor J.D. Simkins. Prior to Military Times, Simkins worked as a Marine scout observer from 2004-2008.

“Spoilers, in this case, simply do not matter. If you shell out your hard-earned money to see this film, you are spoiling your own life and ruining the joy of those in your company,” Simkins wrote in his scathing Military Times review. “Use the 2 hours, 18 minutes to instead do something more enjoyable, like repeatedly smashing your face into a wall.”

Simkins was even more hostile on social media, reacting to the film by writing, “The dialogue. What’s the worst written movie you’ve ever witnessed? Multiply that by 200. A chimpanzee learning American sign language could have concocted a better script.”

“Midway” tells the true story of Pearl Harbor’s aftermath and the eponymous Battle of Midway, in which the United States Navy fended off an attacking fleet of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Emmerich’s cast includes Ed Skrein, Patrick Wilson, Luke Evans, Mandy Moore, Woody Harrelson, Nick Jonas, Darren Criss, and more.

“This writing. This research. This fact-checking. The terminology. The timeline. The acting. The CGI. The sound. Every department who participated in this film should be sent into deep space,” Simkins wrote of the film. “If Roland Emmerich took three seconds away from schmoozing with Chinese studio heads to learn basic American history and geography, we’d all be better.”

Read Simkins’ “Midway” review in its entirety on the Military Times website.

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