- "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Two related examples:
- Throughout the movie, several of the characters feel that the U.S. should have gone farther in the war, helping rebels and/or getting rid of Saddam Hussein. Then the 2003 invasion occurs.
- One of the characters who is against a further invasion even says "What do you want, another Vietnam?"
- And, of course, the Iraqi man who stayed behind "to fight Saddam". We know how well that worked out for them when the U.S. pulled out.
- It gets better/worse: the remnants of the rebels re-coalesced after 2003 into a new organization, one that after a few name changes settled on the jaunty moniker ISIS. It's basically Rambo III and the Mujaheddin all over again.
- The truth is even more of a headache. The rebels after Desert Storm (this movie) were the southern Iraqi Shiites. The rebels after 2003 were both the Shiites and the Sunni-dominated Republican Guard everyone fought in this movie. The Shiites dominated the post-2003 government, half the Sunnis laid down their weapons, a separate rebellion formed in Syria, and many Sunni Iraqis rebels teamed up with them forming ISIS.
- Nightmare Fuel: Any of the torture scenes. Special mention to being forced to drink oil.
- Any of the x-ray scenes, where it shows what a bullet does upon entering the human body. It's clearly meant to disgust the viewer and show the terrible reality of being shot, and this in a genre of movie where thousands of characters catch bullets on the reg. It gives a serious gravity to every shot fired.
- The scene where the Iraqis casually shoot a screaming woman in the head. Split second of dead silence before she hits the ground, cut to her husband and daughter screaming and crying over her bleeding corpse. It was done so casually and the soldiers around them barely react.
- Retroactive Recognition: Judy Greer (the reporter banging Major Gates loudly) wasn't well-known at the time, and the terrified daughter of the executed Iraqi woman? Alia Shawkat (Maeby Fünke).
- Tear Jerker: The conversation between Troy and Said, where Said reveals that his wife was crippled and his son died in a US bombing run.
YMMV / Three Kings