A group of U.S. soldiers returning from Iraq struggle to integrate back into family and civilian life, while living with the memory of a war that threatens to destroy them long after they've left the battlefield.
Thirty years after they served together in Vietnam, a former Navy Corpsman Larry "Doc" Shepherd re-unites with his old buddies, former Marines Sal Nealon and Reverend Richard Mueller, to bury his son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War.
DreamWorks Pictures' Thank You for Your Service follows a group of U.S. soldiers returning from Iraq who struggle to integrate back into family and civilian life, while living with the memory of a war that threatens to destroy them long after they've left the battlefield. Starring an ensemble cast led by Miles Teller, Haley Bennett, Joe Cole, Amy Schumer, Beulah Koale, Scott Haze, Keisha Castle-Hughes, Brad Beyer, Omar J. Dorsey and Jayson Warner Smith, the drama is based on the bestselling book by Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and author David Finkel. Jason Hall, who wrote the screenplay of American Sniper, makes his directorial debut with Thank You for Your Service and also serves as its screenwriter. Jon Kilik (The Hunger Games series, Babel) produces the film, while Ann Ruark (Biutiful) and Jane Evans (Sin City) executive produces.
Steven Spielberg was expected to join the film as director, while American Sniper's Oscar-nominated scribe Jason Dean Hall was hired in June 2013 to adapt the book into a film. See more »
When Sergeant Emery is driving his car with Staff Sergeant Schumann riding in the passenger seat, notice that the outside shots show a silver Dodge Challenger (2-door) but inside shots show what appears to be a Dodge Charger (4-door). In any case, it's clear that there are back doors to the car with their own full windows which is inconsistent with the exterior appearance of the car. See more »
I thought you were fine. You're lying to me, I found your VA questionnaire, everything's a lie! You're sick and I can't do anything if you don't fucking talk to me, Adam!
I have to be sick or I can't get my benefits.
So you don't want to die? It was multiple choice and you said you wanted to die. Was that a lie? Hmm? Adam?
I don't know.
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I spent a fair amount of the first part of this movie being aggravated. I eventually realized that it was some of the characters that were aggravating me, but that the movie itself was really very good.
First and foremost is the acting. There is not a weak or even mediocre performance here. All the actors are truly first-rate, and give riveting performances. (I couldn't tear myself away to get a refill of my popcorn. lol) Some of the men pull off the very difficult task of making you care about them - not necessarily like, but care about them - even though they are, in some ways, not very likable. If you are a guy it's hard not to watch this movie and wonder if you could have gotten through what they get through in Iraq.
The directing is also very good. The action/interest never flags.
For me, it was impossible not to compare this movie to Deerhunter, Michel Cimino's masterpiece about the effects of the Vietnam War on those who returned from it. The scope here is very different, much more intimate. There are no elaborate wedding festivities, and the hunting scene does not have the scenic grandeur of the deer hunts in the earlier movie. There are no terrifying scenes of torture of American soldiers, such as the cages lowered into rat-infested waters or the roulette game that gave me nightmares for days after I saw Cimino's film. I suspect this movie did not have that sort of budget. But, if it does not scare you as much, it nevertheless conveys equally well the inability of three American soldiers to settle back into civilian life here at home
Part of that - and these were the parts that aggravated me - is because they do foolish things, and try to remain faithful to worthless conceptions of courage and manhood, conceptions that are clearly blamed on the military. (The scene in the VA where the army officer tells the two soldiers there seeking help to go back home so that they won't make his outfit look "weak" had me cursing out loud at that bastard.) A fact of war is that we send far more men into combat than we have men capable of the philosophical detachment and reasoning to separate themselves from culturally-induced ideas that are actually unhealthy. One of the repeated themes in the movie is that these soldiers need to learn how to talk about what happened to them and how they feel about it, but no one considers how American society in general and the military in particular tell men NOT to do this and shame them if they try. Most of the women counselors we see at the VA can't figure out how to get men to talk about their experiences and feelings in a way that does not make them feel unmanly. The men there can't handle such feelings themselves, and just turn or walk away. Between that and the legendary bureaucratic inefficiency of the VA, you are left wondering which battle is harder for them: facing ISIS in Iraq or trying to get the care they deserve back here at home.
This movie left me deeply moved, indeed shaken. But that is because the acting was so good, and the direction so effective. The two airheads down the row from me spent much of the movie on their IPhones or chatting, but I couldn't take my eyes, ears, or mind off it for a moment.
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