Operation Homecoming: Writing The Wartime Experience (2007)

RICHARD ROBBINS

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.5.  USA, 2007.  The Documentary Group.  Screenplay by , , , , , , , .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Academy Awards 2007.  

The power of literature to deal with the devastation of war is directly applied to those who experience battle in this incredibly powerful documentary. Soldiers emerging from the Iraq War are given the opportunity to express what they have seen and witnessed thanks to workshops and training by writing professors.  Narrated by various notable celebrities (including , Robert Duvall,  and ), we hear a number of these stories read aloud while footage plays on the screen, book-ended a number of times by short and not in any way superfluous talking head interviews with military personnel. What’s important here is that history is not being told by the highest-ranking members of the army but by those on the ground level, which makes the stories that much more devastating to experience. One particular story, “Taking Chance” by Michael Strobl, eventually became an Emmy and Golden Globe-winning television movie of the same name with Kevin Bacon.

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