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Hell and Back Again (2011)

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Reviews: 16 user | 32 critic | 17 from Metacritic.com

What does it mean to lead men in war? What does it mean to come home? Hell and Back Again is a cinematically revolutionary film that asks and answers these questions with a power and ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Nathan Harris ...
Himself (as Sgt Nathan Harris)
Ashley Harris ...
Herself
The Marines of Echo Company ...
Themselves
Christian Cabaniss ...
Himself (as Lt Col Christian Cabaniss)
Eric Meador ...
Himself (as Cot Eric Meador)
Ted Hubbard ...
Himself (as Lt Edward Hubbard)
Terry Roberts ...
Himself (as Chaplain Terry Roberts)
Doug Webb ...
Himself (as SSgt Doug Webb)
Robert Gaines ...
Himself (as Lt Cmdr Robert Gaines)
Matthew Swibe ...
Himself (as Lt Cmdr Matthew Swibe)
Chris MacDonald ...
Himself (as Sgt Chris MacDonald)
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Storyline

What does it mean to lead men in war? What does it mean to come home? Hell and Back Again is a cinematically revolutionary film that asks and answers these questions with a power and intimacy no previous film about the conflict in Afghanistan has been able to achieve. It is a masterpiece in the cinema of war. Written by Danfung Dennis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Details

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Release Date:

5 October 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Helvetet tur och retur  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,413 (USA) (7 October 2011)

Gross:

$37,539 (USA) (3 February 2012)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Despite an establishing shot of the exterior of a Walgreens pharmacy, the scene where Nathan's wife purchases his prescriptions is clearly filmed inside a CVS pharmacy, as seen on the cashier's name tag. See more »

Soundtracks

Hell And Back
Music & Lyrics by J. Ralph
Performed by Willie Nelson
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User Reviews

 
Not really what other reviewers say but still a decent documentary
13 July 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

OK, the reviews on this say that this is some kind of a revolutionary documentary, is pro/anti war neutral, and several others things. But that really isn't the case.

First I will not say it is horrible. It is actually pretty good. My problem is more about what people say about it. The only real thing I see that is different is that expensive cameras were used. That is about it. Watching it you get the feel though, that this is not real and it is a recreation of what happened. That is due to the cameras, but also the dialog going on in the war scenes. Being a veteran, I can say that the dialog going on between soldiers feels a lot more forced. As if, in the fog of a fire fight the cameraman is prompting these guys to talk and it is not just filming things as they happened. I am not sure if that i what was going on, just that through experience, it is pretty suspect that that is what is going on. I don't think that is some kind of dirty trick or anything. It just is what it is.

I also take issue with those that say this is a war neutral film. If you look at the score on this site about this movie it rates high which in today's day and age doesn't happen unless it skews to a "evil empire of the U.S.A." movie. The story of Harris at home also shows mostly the effects of PTSD, and has a bit of feel of a film that says,"Look at the horrible gun culture of the U.S." I think that feeling is veiled in a way that some may be able to say is neutral.

Nobody likes war. Especially those that fight it. The problem is there are people all over the world that think there is never a reason to ever go to war and want us to completely stay away from war. It is a noble thought and gesture, but it has no basis in reality. Neville Chamberlain tried that in the 1930's and it didn't turn out well. The reason that peace at all costs doesn't work because there are other people out there that don't think that way. I think the most recent example is our idiot President Obama facing Mitt Romney in a debate before the 2012 election. Mitt Romney said that Russia was a geo-political enemy of the U.S. Obama's snarky comment was that the 80's are calling and want their president back. There was laughter and the folks at Obama's propaganda network (MSNBC) laughed and made fun of the thought that Russia was in anyway an enemy. Well, they weren't laughing when Russia annexed the Crimea.... Obama forgot that Putin does not think in the "leave everything and one alone fallacy...

PTSD is a tough thing. This movie touches on it, but a lot of what I saw was just a guy who was having trouble coming home from being a big, strong, tough, Member of the military and trying to adjust to being wounded, and to a degree helpless. I think that has more to do with the depression and everything else. That is a huge thing even without PTSD. PTSD has been around since the beginning of human existence, not something just discovered and the hard part about it is that it effects everyone differently and there are no real way to predict how it will effect anyone. Some have an extremely difficult time with it some do not.

All in all, it is not a horrible film, but I really don't think it was a huge, awesome film that should be dressed in a bunch of awards. Many are comparing it to "Restrepo" but if I were to compare the two I would say that "Restrepo" is a far better documentary than this one.Part of that is this movie has no real story, and it is much more disjointed than the other one. Still decent though.


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