We are grateful for this Memorial Day weekend to those who have fallen in service of the country, which, even with the changes that need to be made, many enjoy today.
I know our family, and perhaps yours, will be seeing one or more esteemed films that resonate with Holiday, and which, after all, are about more than just sales on websites. I’ve picked just three of my favorites here:
This is 5 blood is the 2020 Spike Lee thriller that follows five friends who shed blood, sweat and tears together during the Vietnam War and return, 50 years later, to bring back the body of a fallen friend, and possibly buried treasure with it. But is the treasure real wealth, or just compensation, or a curse?
We interviewed one of the stars, Delroy Lindo, who said, “I hope there will be an enhanced recognition, as a result of watching this movie, of these men, and their contributions, their courage and love for America, and their love for the country in the context of displaying their humanity.”
His character wears a MAGA hat for most of the film, and Lindo says he grew up feeling what it meant to the man he was portraying, which is what the actor should do.
The best years of our lives (based on the 1945 novel by MacKinlay Kantor) is William Wheeler’s powerful and touching 1946 film, winner of several Oscars. If you haven’t cried in a few minutes as three veterans have come home from World War II and are flying over their old hometown, see a professional.
Harold Russell won and deserves much attention for his performance as a veteran who lost his hands in battle. But note the strong and also brilliant performance of Frederic March as the middle-aged recruiter who comes back to life as the vice president of the bank (“everyone will try to rehabilitate me,” that worries) and Myrna Lowe as his wife who keeps the family together.
Warner Bros. via
Wyler has a major role in Mark Harris’ 2014 book, Five are backand clear about the human costs of war, even to those fortunate enough to survive. (Find the scene in which the mother and father read the quote that their son received for a medal.)
Finally, 1949 Twelve oh high hour Among the crews of American planes flying from England at the time of the war. It’s a gritty movie that depicts the malfunctions of some of the most heroic characters. Gregory Peck is great of course, but look at Dean Jagger, speechless and eloquent, as the veteran warrior in the opening scene who returns to his old airport, now a place where cows graze, and remembers more than he wants.
20th Century Fox via
We are grateful for the sacrifices of so many. We hope you have a good weekend.