Veterans Day at The Movies

This Veterans Day, Greenwich International Film Festival would like to take a moment to thank the brave men and women, who have fought America’s battles, and remember those who have risked their lives so we can live ours. Two films that have recently been released Thank You For Your Service and Last Flag Flying, shed light on forgotten hero’s who struggle not only with the loss of loved ones, but also with the integration back into society after returning from war.

Based on a true story, Thank You For Your Service, is a powerful film that follows the lives of two soldiers, Miles Teller and Beulah Koale, struggling with posttraumatic stress disorder amidst their return to America. Not only do Teller and Koale try to prove to themselves that Iraq didn’t change them, they also try to prove it to their families, who are expecting the same pre-deployed person to return. This film emphasizes the fact that for many veterans, the fighting begins once they return home from war, and stresses the hopelessness and bureaucracy many soldiers encounter upon their return. The passionate performances from both Teller and Koale capture the sense of what it truly means to serve. Their realistic portrayal of our veterans—struck with loneliness, desperation and guilt—gave me a chilling realization of the unceasing hardships that they face.

Last Flag Flying follows three Vietnam veterans who reunite after 30 years when one of their sons is killed in the Iraq War. The three men embark on a not-so-normal road trip, making up for lost time and reminiscing on experiences from war that continue to affect their lives. With an exceptional cast—including Steve Carell, Bryan Cranston and Laurence Fishburne—the film exemplifies the bond that these veterans have with one another, and the ongoing pain and loss that the war has caused them. Despite being out of touch for many years, the relationship between the three men—established through pain, and grief—has not changed.

Both Last Flag Flying and Thank You For Your Service are impressive movies that bring attention and awareness to the fact that war has a profound effect on those who engage in combat. This Veterans Day, Greenwich International Film Festival encourages you to see one of these remarkable films and to thank and support those who have made sacrifices for our country.

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Katelyn Coughlin

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