Monday, July 11, 2011

Flags of our Fathers Movie Review

I have a sensitivity for the overlooked emotional baggage our servicemen suffer from as the return home from combat.  The horrors they witness, the friends that the lose, the things they must do to survive is difficult for me to fathom second hand.  No combat arena in our nations history has proved to be more horrific than that of the Pacific during World War II.  When you read combat statistics, one stat that is most frequently absent is the number of POW's on either side as the Japanese often didn't take prisoners alive, nor did they offer themselves for capture.  So each battle in the pacific resulted in either a total defeat for the US or a total loss. 
The movie "Flags of Our Fathers" is an attempt to tell both the story of the hardships 3 special soldiers faced upon returning home for public relations duty before the wars end, and that of the last battle they fought in, Iwo Jima, the first battle in which US casualties exceeded Japanese, despite a US victory.   Unfortunately, the movie fails to do either.  It is ineffectively jumpy and disorganized, which is disappointing coming from veteran filmmaker Clint Eastwood.  Casting was poorly done for one of the principle characters, Ira Hayes, the Native American survivor of the flag raisers of Iwo Jima.  I was so mad every time some person would disrespect him using Indian slang, but the actor was so bad, I was distracted.  The height of the disorganization came towards the end when the movie switched over to a veteran son narration with a father-son healing.  Problem is, these elements were never introduced so you as the viewer couldn't care as much.  I give this movie two thumbs down.  I bought it for $5.00 at Wal-Mart and am now using the disc as a cup saucer.  I also will not watch Letters From Iwo Jima.

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