The filmmaker's subjects are patriotic young Americans - ordinary men and women who heeded the call for military service in Iraq - as they experience recruitment and training, combat, ... See full summary »
The filmmaker's subjects are patriotic young Americans - ordinary men and women who heeded the call for military service in Iraq - as they experience recruitment and training, combat, homecoming, and the struggle to reintegrate with families and communities. The terrible conflict in Iraq is a prelude for the even more challenging battles fought by the soldiers returning home - with personal demons, an uncomprehending public, and an indifferent government. As these battles take shape, each soldier becomes a new kind of hero, bearing witness and giving support to other veterans, and learning to fearlessly wield the most powerful weapon of all - the truth. Written by
War is never over until the last person who can remember it is gone.
This film illustrates the worst part of surviving war, the memories. For many soldiers, men and women alike, returning home can be the beginning of real problems. I am reminded of my father and his brothers returning from WWII. For one of my uncles the war was never over. He survived the D-Day invasion, something akin to the first 20 minutes of Saving Private Ryan. For him the memories not only lingered but tortured him. He became an alcoholic as did several of my cousins, his sons. Jump ahead 60 years and place the soldiers in a different war, in a different country, the result is the same. When I saw this at the KC FilmFest, I was reminded that there are somethings about war that never change. The idealistic young men and women are not spared the emotional torment of what happened in Iraq, and especially if you are against the war you will come away with more compassion for the soldiers there trying to do what they believe or have been told is right.
The tag line from the Vietnam war film Platoon says it all. "The First Casualty of War is Innocence."
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