Sunday Movie Review
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Sunday Movie Review – Hacksaw Ridge – WWII Hero

Welcome to my Sunday Movie Review. I thought I’d share this movie because despite the ‘war’ content, which I always cover my eyes when I see violence or blood, like a gag reflex, I loved the message and the compassion of Desmond Doss, played by Andrew Garfield, whom I’ve never heard of, but wow, this guy can steal your empathy in Hacksaw Ridge. He almost reminds me of a young Sean Penn?? I had this review in draft for when I didn’t have a book review to share, and I managed a few stolen moments to edit and post here for your enjoyment.

A WWII true story about the unlikeliest hero, Desmond Doss who enlisted to save lives, not kill them.

This movie from 2016, was a based on a true story about a man who enlisted himself to join the fight in WWII. He grew up in Virginia under the belt of his abusive father and God-loving mother. But Doss is a compassionate soul who when he had the chance to kill his father after near beating his mother to death, he couldn’t. The story is about a man who wanted to do something for his country but would not participate in violence and only wanted to be a medic – who turned into a hero.

Desmond Doss grew up and was known as a ‘conscientious objector‘ who desperately wanted to serve in WWII as a medic. The problem was he refused to carry or even touch a gun. He was abused by the court martial sentence, but he stood his ground. He made clear he wanted to serve his country by saving lives, not killing them.

His life in the army was tough as at first he took a lot of teasing for his stance. There’s a beautiful love story in this movie too, despite the fact that much of the movie was war footage in the battle at Okinawa, which of course was the main theme of the story about how Doss came to be a respected medic and eventually receiving a gold medal of honor for saving 75 lives in that gruesome battle. Too be honest, despite the gore and the pain I feel when I see the injured, and despite the fact that the theme was about the ugly war, this guy had me swallowing my heart through his rescues that I had to peel my hands away from my eyes to make sure he lived. Being that it was a true story and all I’d read was he’d received the gold medal for his heroic rescues, I wasn’t sure if he received the medal as a survivor or posthumously. And there, I will leave you hanging to find out for yourselves.

Check out this gripping trailer. It pretty much highlights what I highlighted in my review. Lol, maybe I’m in the wrong business? I love reviewing movies, especially the ones that grab my heart and require Kleenex.

 

I always like to look at book reviews for a movie after I’ve watched, to see what people got from the book to discover which was better. Most times, the book is better because, after all, it was good enough to make into a movie but then gets rewritten in script form where time is taken into consideration, so naturally, some things are left out. But I have seen some fine movies in my time that the book somewhat disappointed.

I dug around Amazon to look for this book and I saw a few. But I was searching for the original author’s book and I came across this comment in a review for a book version that is an abridged version,

“Redemption at Hacksaw Ridge (hardback) is a much expanded, reedited edition of the original The Unlikeliest Hero, which went out of print in 1967. The new edition contains nearly three times as many pictures, a new Foreword, and Epilogue.”

 

I found the book on Amazon:

 

Have any of you seen this movie or read the book? If you like hero stories about survival, standing your ground for your beliefs, you will surely love this movie.

 

©DGKaye2021

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D.G. Kaye is a nonfiction/memoir writer, who writes from her own life experiences and self-medicates with a daily dose of humor.

31 Comments

  • Darlene Foster

    I´ve heard good things about this movie. Like you, I have a problem with stories with a lot of violence and blood, but I do like some war stories. I am totally against wars but have much respect for those who did fight for what we believe in. I can read about it easier than watching it on a screen. I will keep my eyes open for this one. Thanks for the good review. Hope you and your dear hubby are doing OK.

    • dgkaye

      Happy to enlighten you Darlene. Yes, I too can’t take the violence of war, but the inspirational stories behind the characters in these stories, keep me coming back – even if I do close my eyes on the gore. <3 And thanks for checking, hub and I are both still adapting to this new lifestyle. <3

  • Annika Perry

    Debby, I haven’t seen or heard of the film but you’ve sold me on it! The character seems to have won a place in your heart and mind and although not either a fan of typical war films, I like the ones that offer something on a more profound level. This seems to tick the box perfectly. The last film I saw at the cinema was 1917 and blimey, that was brilliant but tough to watch … and at times hid my eyes. The way the film was shot is incredible and one of the major reasons I wanted to see it on the big screen.

    Hope you’re doing okay as possible, thinking of you. hugs xx ❤️

    • dgkaye

      Hi Annika. I haven’t yet seen 1917, but have full intentions. But it sounds like this movie could be on the same level – yes, like me, I cover my eyes because I can’t stomach violence, but the storyline grabs your heart. And thank you for sending a thought my way. Much appreciated my friend. <3 <3

  • sally cronin

    Brlliant review Debby for an amazing film.. We saw in the cinema and it was inspiring and horrifying at the same time.. what an incredible young man… thanks for sharing your thoughts..♥

  • Hilary Melton-Butcher

    Hi Debby – I’ve seen the name of the film talked about etc … but didn’t know it was the way you described … if I come across it – I’ll definitely watch it – bearing in mind your review – which seems outstanding … thanks so much for posting – all the very best – with hugs – Hilary

    • dgkaye

      Hi Hilary. I’m happy to hear my review enticed you. Yes, you know me and my reviews by now, I love movies that move me and inspirational stories of victory and overcoming. One of my favorite genres to read is historical fiction/WWII era, not for the horrors, but the survival stories, heroism, and humanity. I hope you get a chance to watch it. <3

  • John Maberry

    Neither read nor seen. I read several Vietnam War-related books but none about WWII and have seen only a few of the movies of either. I found Apocalypse Now very much like the surreal reality (yes seemingly contradictory) of wartime life there–other than the unlikely business of “going upriver” to kill rogue Col. Kurtz. Saving Private Ryan seemed equally unlikely as the Kurtz mission (don’t know if it was supposedly true).

  • Jane Sturgeon

    My lovely unicorn buddy, thanks for the review. I will watch this. Like you, I have to close my eyes and ears to violence on screen, but I feel drawn to true stories. You might enjoy ‘The Best of Enemies’, which I saw recently. A few years ago, we had a live stream from the National Theatre in London to our local cinema here. It was a play ‘Angels of America’ and was eight hours long and shown over two evenings. Andrew Garfield played the lead and I will never forget his ability to convey emotion. I have been a fan ever since. You and your lovely hub are in my prayers, thoughts and heart, always. I am in your pocket. <3 Xxxx <3 <3

    • dgkaye

      Thank you so much for the recommendation Jane. I will definitely look forward to your recommendation. I love me some great acting where a character can steal our hearts. And Garfield certainly did that in Hacksaw Ridge, so I look forward to find your recommend and watching.
      And good to know you’re always within a pocket reach my dear friend. <3 <3

      • Jane Sturgeon

        My buddy, I have just watched this. What a story which translates into a gripping film, where I went through a lot of tissues. Thank you for recommending this. Pocket love. Xxxxxx 💗💗💗

        • dgkaye

          Oh yay Jane! I’m happy to inspire your watching of this movie. You see my point right? Yes, war is ugly, but there are so many beautiful spirits who remain staunch, despite the evil. I knew you’d like it, and yes, if you have a heart, you’re going to need tissues. <3 xxxx

  • Carol Balawyder

    I have not seen nor heard of this movie. Nor have I heard of the book. Not a big war fan but your review, Debby, makes me want to see the movie.
    Wishing you and your husband lots of grace. <3

    • dgkaye

      Thank you my friend. I loved the story of the human spirit in this movie, despite the gore of war. <3 Thanks for your lovely wishes too Carol <3 xx

    • dgkaye

      Lol, I hear you girl. I loved the humanity and the inspiration of the character in this movie. If you close your eyes on the gore parts, I’m sure you will see my point. 🙂 xx

  • Diana Peach

    Thanks for the review, Debby. We’re always looking for a good movie and frequently come up short. This is one my husband will watch too, which helps. And we like true stories. For some reason they’re extra emotional and gripping. 🙂 Thanks for the recommendation.

  • Robbie Cheadle

    I haven’t seen this movie or read the book, Debby, but it does interest me. I’m on a war book spree at the moment having read All Quiet on the Western front, A Farewell to Arms and now Last Man Standing.

  • Amy M. Reade

    I had forgotten how good this movie was! In fact, I read the title of the post and thought, “I need to see that.” It was only after reading about the conscientious objector medic that I realized I have seen it and I loved it. Great post, Debby, and I’m glad you left out any spoilers. 🙂

  • Olga Núñez Miret

    Thanks, Debby. You’re right. I watched the movie when it came out, in the cinema, and loved it. I discovered Andrew Garfield when he starred in a made for TV film called “Boy A”, about a terrible subject (I won’t mention it here) and he was fantastic. I’ve been following his career since, and although he doesn’t always choose the best movies, when he gets the right role he can be incredible. I had some misgivings because Mel Gibson was the director, and well… there had been issues, but the story was inspiring and the performance great all around.
    I haven’t read the book though, and it seems there was a documentary about it as well.
    Thanks for the reminder. Excellent choice (I love horror and have watched many war movies, so that side of things doesn’t bother me, but you’re right, for a war movie it shows a pretty different side of things).
    Thinking of you both. Big hugs.

    • dgkaye

      Thanks so much Olga for sharing your thoughts. And like you, if I’d known Mel Gibson had anything to do with it, I may not have watched it, lol <3

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