While on a recent deployment to Iraq, US Army Staff Sergeant Will Montgomery is injured when an improvised explosive device goes off within close proximity to him. He is back in the States recovering from the more serious of those injuries, including one to his eye and leg. He has resumed a sexual relationship with his long time girlfriend Kelly, despite the fact that she is now engaged to another man who Will knows. With the few months Will has left in his enlistment, the army assigns him to the Casualty Notification Team in his area. Not having a background in counseling, psychology or grief management, he is unsure if he is well suited to this job. He is partnered with a career soldier, Captain Tony Stone, who teaches Will the precise protocol involved in the job. Tony tells Will, who quickly learns by on the job experience, that this job has its own dangers. As Will learns to adapt to the range of emotions of the next of kin, he is unprepared for the reaction of Olivia Pitterson, ...Written by
The scene where Will (Ben Foster) and Olivia (Samantha Morton) speak to each other in her kitchen is eight minutes long and was shot in one take. Co-Writer and Director Oren Moverman allowed actors and actresses to improvise in certain scenes. See more »
(at around 1 min) Capt. Tony Stewart and SSGT Will Montgomery enter the house and sit on the couch without removing their caps. See more »
Captain Tony Stone:
Civilian life's for people who ain't seen shit. It's too late for you, you've already seen the shit, you can't unsee it anymore. You can't be an insurance salesman now, brother, it's too fukin' late.
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Brilliantly acted film depicting two soldiers whose job it is to inform families when loved ones are killed in battle. Harrelson has never been better and Foster more than matches him all the way. It's emotional and engaging and genuinely painful at times. I had always thought how hard it must be to carry out such a job but had never really considered just what psychologically damage it could do long term to the person doing it. Harrelson depicts a man who has been doing the job far too long brilliantly and Foster in turn shows just what it can do to you initially. It's a perfect blend and the chemistry is excellent from start to finish. Deserves a much wider release and is with out doubt one of the best films of last year.
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