Drama, History, War
William Broyles Jr., Paul Haggis
Ryan Phillippe, Jesse Bradford, Adam Beach, John Benjamin Hickey, John Slattery, Barry Pepper, Jamie Bell, Paul Walker, Robert Patrick, Neal McDonough, Melanie Lynskey, Thomas McCarthy, Chris Bauer, Judith Ivey, Myra Turley
In 1945, the Marines attack twelve thousand Japaneses protecting the twenty square kilometers of the sacred Iwo Jima island in a very violent battle. When they reach the Mount Suribachi and six soldiers raise their flag on the top, the picture becomes a symbol in a post Great Depression America. The government brings the three survivors to America to raise funds for war, bringing hope to desolate people, and making the three men heroes of the war. However, the traumatized trio has difficulty dealing with the image built by their superiors, sharing the heroism with their mates. ------- During WW2 the American Government's war chest was empty because the American people didn't have faith that they could win so they stopped buying war bonds. So a campaign was launched using the photo of the Flag Raising at Iwo Jima. Now the three surviving men in the picture, Doc Bradley, Rene Gagnon and Ira Hayes are brought back to the U.S. for the bond drive. But when they arrive they learn that the story the government released to the press is full inaccuracies and they have keep on saying the story even though it's not true. While Rene Gagnon has no trouble saying it, Doc Bradley and Ira Hayes are not comfortable with it. ------- The picture of six marines raising the US flag after the exhausting, bloody conquest of barren volcanic island Iwo Jima, the first piece of sacred home soil the Japanese must cede, becomes iconic too for the Pacific campaign at the time giving false sense of victory being nearly won. A complex structure of flashbacks interlaces three phases in their lives. First the battle, involving countless comrades, many of whom fell like the Japanese defenders. Then the survivors being commandeered as the face of a homeland tour to sell the public war bonds to refill the empty war chest, a luxury reprieve from battle but also a guilt paradox. Finally the after-war, mainly trying to fit in civilian life again, until the present of the narrator, son of one of them. ------- In February, 1945, one of the fiercest battles of the Pacific theater of World War II occurs on the tiny island of Iwo Jima. Thousands of Marines attack the stronghold maintained by thousands of Japanese, and the slaughter on both sides is horrific. Early in the battle, an American flag is raised atop the high point, Mount Suribachi, and a photograph of the raising becomes an American cause celebre. As a powerful inspiration to war-sick Americans, the photo becomes a symbol of the Allied cause. The three surviving flag raisers, Rene Gagnon, John Bradley, and Ira Hayes, are whisked back to civilization to help raise funds for the war effort. But the accolades for heroism heaped upon the three men are at odds with their own personal realizations that thousands of real heroes lie dead on Iwo Jima, and that their own contributions to the fight are only symbolic and not deserving of the singling out they are experiencing. Each of the three must come to terms with the honors, exploitation, and grief that they face simply for being in a photograph.
132 minutes (at 23.97 frames per second)
DivX 5 - resolution: 576x240