The struggle between good and evil and life and death are stories that draw audiences in. These are elements that often present themselves in stories of war. Band of Brothers and Dunkirk — though created years apart — show an understanding of this. World War II had the biggest goal in American history which was defeating Nazi Germany. This subject matter has proven to be popular in the recent film Midway. The 2019 film featuring Woody Harrelson told the story of the naval battle and is now climbing the streaming charts. Now #8 on IMDb TV, fans can watch the film for free on streaming and experience the film first hand.
Not a battle often featured in cinema, Midway explores the real-life conflict between the American and Japanese fleets. Pearl Harbor is typically the battle most explored, though Midway has had a film representation before. In 1976, Charlton Heston and Henry Fonda starred in a film of the same name (via rogerebert.com). Woody Harrelson’s Midway is updated for modern sentiments. This film is directed by Roland Emmerich who has experience with high-concept battles. The director’s previous experience includes Independence Day and The Day After Tomorrow. However, the stakes are higher with this film and the real-life events that surround it.
Midway employs a wide range of cast, though its main character is Dick Best (Ed Skrein), a fighter pilot who enjoys the thrill of battle (via The Hollywood Reporter). Though Best does not seem to care whether he makes it home or not, he does have a home to go to. The star-studded cast includes Mandy Moore as his wife, in the one main female role. Also cast is Nick Jonas as a sailor in the Navy as well as Patrick Wilson, Dennis Quaid, and Woody Harrelson in further supporting roles. There is no doubt that this is an impressive cast of Hollywood veterans as well as up-and-coming professionals.
However, Midway did not impress when it initially came out in 2019. Though only two years after Dunkirk premiered, the film did not carry the same high profile as the Christopher Nolan film. Nolan has become synonymous with big-budget and high concepts. Dunkirk implored a non-linear style of storytelling. However viewers felt about it, it was part of Christopher Nolan’s brand and continued in films such as Tenet (via The New York Times). Midway failed to connect with audiences, sitting at a 42% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Variety called the film “B-movie basic,” despite actors such as Woody Harrelson impressing audiences in the past. While audiences weren’t interested in the film when it was released in movie theaters, they’re now interested in seeing how these big-name stars fared in the film as it’s available on free streaming.
The actor has been a familiar face since his breakout role on the sitcom Cheers. Woody Harrelson entered the popular show in season 4 as a character named — funnily enough — Woody Boyd. Harrelson was brought on in the wake of a Cheers’ actor’s death. Nick Colasanto played the beloved character Coach and tragically died in season 3 of the series. Harrelson’s role was meant to fill the void, as best as it could.
Woody Harrelson would go on to star in humorous films as well as acclaimed. After starring in The People vs. Larry Flynt, Harrelson earned an Oscar nomination for the role (via OK Magazine). The film centered around the real-life story of controversial figure Larry Flynt who was the founder of Hustler. The graphic images depicted in Flynt’s magazine are what made it notorious but Harrelson appreciated the real man for his honesty. That wasn’t the last time that the actor would be acclaimed for a role.
True Detective is a title that has become equated with prestige television. Debuting in 2014, the series followed the now iconic roles of Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) and Marty Hart (Woody Harrelson). The two formed a reluctant partnership in Louisiana as they try to solve a serial murderer dealing in ritualistic iconography. Though the second season disappointed many, including Harrelson himself, the first season continues to be highly regarded (via Indie Wire). Harrelson’s roles are varied. While he has done serious HBO content, he also isn’t afraid of mixing it up.
In the past year, Woody Harrelson appeared as Eddie Brock’s rival in Venom: Let There Be Carnage. Sporting a mop of curly red locks, the actor portrays Cletus Kassady, a serial killer who becomes a fellow symbiote known as Carnage. Bigger and badder than the titular Venom, Harrelson demonstrates the fun he can have with his roles. Viewers clearly continue to appreciate Harrelson’s contributions, if Midway has anything to say about it. The movie is now available for free streaming on IMDb TV.