This is the first movie I've seen, or even heard about, that focuses entirely on military drone operators and their distant targets. Yes, there are lots of contrivances and manipulations, as well as misogynistic tones to the film, but I thought the filmmakers maintained a good deal of tension throughout and there are plenty of twists and turns here.
I don't know if there is a specific agenda here or what the exact rules-of- engagement are for military drone strikes, but as noted by two reviewers before me on this site, the movie made me think as the drama unfolded and various concepts were presented on either side of the drone attacks, which I believe will be debated for many years to come.
Eloise Mumford stars as Lt. Sue Lawson, who's on her first day at her job as a military drone console operator, at Creech Air Force Base, in Nevada. She's the daughter of a 4 star general, a trained boxer, and was "top stick" at the Air Force Academy before a detached retina forced her out of the skies.
Matt O'Leary co-stars as Airman Jack Bowles, who's the more experienced of the two. He's the pilot at the drone controls, and has already had 23 successful "target prosecutions" over the past 11 months.
The movie is almost entirely focused on their one shift to track a suspected terrorist Mahmoud Kahlil, in Afghanistan, and eliminate him with a missile strike. With Kahlil's parent's home being surveilled, it becomes apparent that Kahlil should be joining them and other family members for his birthday.
However, as the tension mounts for a possible strike, a rift develops between Lt. Lawson and Airman Bowles which threatens the whole operation, despite direct orders from a supervising Colonel. As mentioned, this will lead to various dramatic twists and will escalate into a startling and disturbing ending.
In summary, I thought the director Rick Rosenthal, as well as writer Matt Whitten, maintained good pacing throughout as well as a strong sense of realism. I feel this film will be controversial for many, as it raises a number of questions about drone strikes currently being used by the military.