Brothers... on Holy Ground
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Top Customer Reviews
"The most heart-wrenching story in this 9/11 documentary belongs to rookie fireman Tommy Casatelli from Engine Company 226. He wasn't feeling well on that fateful day, and asked to switch places with fellow firefighter Brian McAleese. Casatelli drove the engine to the World Trade Center after the first plane hit and, as a result, he didn't go into the building. McAleese went in instead and, along with three other men from the 226, never came out. Casatelli's sit-down interview for the documentary is riddled with survivor's guilt, though the man is never self-pitying. He talks frankly about how the job of the driver is to stay with the engine and how, left alone in the midst of a disaster well beyond his comprehension or experience, he struggled to decide whether to follow his orders or gear up and enter the building. One can see how his decision to follow orders--not out of cowardice, but out of duty--haunts him, as does the decision to switch places with Brian McAleese. The validation and assurances of McAleese's mother, widow, and brother John, a fireman from Engine Company 219, have brought Casatelli little comfort. His story is a reminder that, for some, the horror of that day hasn't receded with the passage of time.
Brothers...On Holy Ground is the work of Mike Lennon, a retired New York City fireman who'd explored his interest in filmmaking by taking some classes at New School University. This documentary was an act of catharsis for him. Lennon sat down with over a dozen firefighters, a dispatcher, a few Manhattan residents, and a handful of 9/11 widows.Read more ›
This film is a deeply moving personal account by firefighters themselves who survived 9/11. I purchased it for our son's 13th birthday, as part of his lifelong ambition to be a firefighter, and how we support and encourage him in that life. I wanted him to understand not just the glamour, but also the emotion of being a firefighter: the inner strengths that are needed, and for which sometimes your own strength isn't enough, you have to go to God's strength, or you are injured in ways you can't always express.
Finding a film by a firefighter about the single greatest tragedy of any Fire Service career, the loss of a colleague, a brother, combined with the single greatest loss of any Fire Service anywhere, was something that made me trust that even though there might have been language that would not be appropriate for our son, the experiences related would be what he needed to understand. As it happens, I haven't found any language which I couldn't let his 8 year old sister hear, I have found firefighters who spoke with honesty and respect for each other. I know that American firefighters in particular have a reputation for playing as hard as they work, but here there is just the open heart of professional lives trying to explain and work through the devastation of unimaginable grief.
So, the format was one satisfaction. I knew the content would be, that wasn't ever an issue.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the most heartfelt movies I have ever seen. It is told from the firefighters viewpoint. It shows the sadness they carry with them and the strength they have to carry on. Read morePublished on September 14, 2013 by S. Rohrbaugh
Appreciate the awesome service you provide. The selection you supply is the best out there so I always go to Amazon first!Published on November 5, 2011 by S. Harris
Needless to say, if you've seen it on TV..You know what your getting. I wanted to own the DVD, because I'm originally from NY and it was ALL I could think of to hold on to the... Read morePublished on December 14, 2010 by Cheryl