Feature

Flags of Our Fathers

Iwo Jima veterans are reluctant to call themselves heroes.

Everyone in America should see Flags of Our Fathers, said Richard Roeper in the Chicago Sun-Times. Especially 'œyounger generations who think of World War II as some dusty piece of black-and-white history.' It tells the story behind that famous photograph of the flag-raising at Iwo Jima in 1945. Moments after a first, smaller flag came down, photographer Joe Rosenthal captured six men planting a second, larger flag. The three 'œheroes' who survived the rest of the battle were then sent on a publicity tour to promote war bonds. Rene Gagnon (Jesse Bradford) loved the attention, Doc Bradley (Ryan Phillippe) felt anguish that the full truth behind the flag-raising was not being revealed, and Ira Hayes (Adam Beach) drank himself into a stupor. Clint Eastwood's movie follows the tour in one story line, portrays the horrific battle for Iwo Jima in a second, and documents Bradley's son's investigation of the event in a third. That 'œmultiplicity of story lines leads to panoramic breadth, as opposed to dramatic depth,' said Michael Phillips in the Chicago Tribune. The only character we get a real sense of is Hayes, while Bradley and Gagnon become cartoons. The rest of the movie is filled with 'œclichés about the ambiguous nature of heroism,' said Michael Sragow in the Baltimore Sun. Eastwood takes a vivid, poignant story and dilutes its meaning with nostalgia and overstatement.

Rating: R

Recommended

Russia's controversial new pipeline
The Nord pipeline.
Briefing

Russia's controversial new pipeline

10 things you need to know today: June 17, 2021
Biden meets Putin
Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: June 17, 2021

Kim Jong Un admits North Korea's food situation is dire
Kim Jong Un.
crisis

Kim Jong Un admits North Korea's food situation is dire

The Biden comment that likely got Putin's attention
Joe Biden.
biden-putin summit

The Biden comment that likely got Putin's attention

Most Popular

Bernie Sanders wants to know if cannabis reporter is 'stoned' right now
Bernie Sanders.
Sounds dope

Bernie Sanders wants to know if cannabis reporter is 'stoned' right now

SCOTUS deals blow to sentencing reform
The Supreme Court.
Picture of Bonnie KristianBonnie Kristian

SCOTUS deals blow to sentencing reform

Georgia election workers reportedly received a 'torrent' of threats
Trump rally.
The big lie

Georgia election workers reportedly received a 'torrent' of threats