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Taking Chance (2009)

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Based on real-life events, Lt. Col. Michael Strobl, a volunteer military escort officer, accompanies the body of 19-year-old Marine Chance Phelps back to his hometown of Dubois, Wyoming.



(screenplay) (as LtCol Michael R. Strobl USMC [Ret.]), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
2,788 ( 76)
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 6 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nicholas Art ...
Nate Strobl (as Nicholas Reese Art)
James Castanien ...
Henry Coy ...
Marine Driver (as GySgt Henry Coy)
Ticketing Agent
Ticketing Agent
Army Sergeant


In April, 2004, casualties mount in Iraq. At Quantico, choices focus on increasing troop strength or only replacing casualties. Lt. Col. Mike Strobl crunches numbers. Stung by his superior's rejection of his recommendation because he lacks recent combat experience, Strobl volunteers for escort duty, accompanying the remains Pfc. Chance Phelps, killed at 19. From Dover to Philadelphia by hearse, from there to Minneapolis and on to Billings by plane, and then by car to Phelps' Wyoming home - person after person pays respects. Kind words, small gifts, and gratitude are given Strobl to deliver to the family on this soul-searching journey. What are his own discoveries? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Drama | War


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Release Date:

21 February 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A lélek útja  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


This film, like "Bernard and Doris" and Kenneth Branagh's version of "As You Like It", bypassed movie theatres in the U.S. and went straight to HBO, even though it was not actually made for television. See more »


Early in the movie during the scene where the flag-draped coffins arrive on the plane, there is a camera shot of the back loading ramp opening from inside the aircraft. If you watch closely you will notice the ramp is already wet with foot prints as it opens while the soldiers are waiting in the nighttime rain to transfer the coffins. This obviously wasn't the first take, since it makes you aware of the rain outside even before the door opens. See more »


LtCol Mike Strobl: I stayed home. I was trained to fight. If I'm not over there, what am I? Those guys, guys like Chance... they're Marines.
Charlie Fitts: And you think you're not? Want to be with your family every night - you think you have to justify that? You'd better stop right there, sir. You've brought Chance home. You're his witness now. Without a witness, they just disappear.
See more »


Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #19.158 (2011) See more »


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User Reviews

Emotional, Moving, Apolitical
22 January 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw this movie at a Sundance in the Schools presentation in Ogden,UT. To give you an idea of the power of this film, 600 + high school students were totally silent during this film and erupted in applause at the end. A vivid demonstration of the impact of this tribute to the sacrifice of a 19 years old Marine PFC killed in Iraq. A true story the based on Chance Phelps who was only 1 - 1/2 years out of high school himself. The director, cinematographer, and producer were there to field questions from the students. In response to a question the Director Katz stated he tried to keep this effort apolitical as a tribute to all who have been killed in Iraq and to focus on the respect and dignity afforded the KIA soldiers on their journey home. This is one of the better movies I've seen dealing with the emotional toll of wars on the families and comrades left behind.

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