A hillbilly sharpshooter becomes one of the most celebrated American heroes of WWI when he single-handedly attacks and captures a German position using the same strategy as in turkey shoot. Written by
Keith Loh <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Gary Cooper, unable to participate in WWII due to his age and an old injury to his hip, felt strongly that this film was his way of contributing to the cause. Cooper later said, "Sergeant Alvin C. York and I had quite a few things in common, even before I played him in screen. We both were raised in the mountains - Tennessee for him, Montana for me - and learned to ride and shoot as a natural part of growing up. 'Sergeant York' won me an Academy Award, but that's not why it's my favorite film. I liked the role because of the background of the picture, and because I was portraying a good, sound American character." See more »
Alvin York plays with the light switch in the hotel, like he's never seen them before. But since he spent weeks in training in the army and then traveled through Europe, he should have had plenty of encounters with electric lights before this. See more »
[at the target range]
Remember, guys, you're usin' real live ammunition! A bullet hasn't got any brains! It'll hit whatever you're aimin' at, so don't start murdering each other!
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A classic and moving war film, even for propaganda
This is one of my all-time favorite films. I've seen it dozens of times and probably many more. The moving and deep drama of the Ozark hillbilly working himself to death to obtain some 'bottom land' is heavy and compelling drama in itself, so much so that one tends to wonder when the war will become an issue. But it does and again, it fills the heart and mind with pathos and suspense. Sergeant York was released during WWII, as an obvious war-bond pusher and patriotism builder, and it is no wonder that is was wildly successful. The war scenes and Cooper's acting are set into a realistic and colorful environment of battle and personal conflict. When York's "You done gimme command" line erupts from the speakers, the viewer is on the edge of his seat, already entranced by the personal heroism of this quiet man. What York did in the war, capturing 132 Germans was real, and the film's portrayal is right on the money, even to the extent, I believe, of filming it on the actual site, but I'm not willing to swear to it. It's the kind of film that makes one proud to be an American and that was its goal. Cooper is entirely believable, although the real Alvin York was hardly as good-looking. It's easy to fall in love with the ever-pretty Joan Leslie, a gem of a woman, as well as the simple and practical Margaret Wycherly as Ma York. Don't you get the idea that she and Pastor Pile have a thing going? Just an irreverent thought.
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