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From Academy Award-winning director Clint Eastwood (Million Dollar Baby, Unforgiven) comes the World Was II epic Flags of Our Fathers, produced by Eastwood, Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg (Saving Private Ryan, Schindlers List), and Rob Lorenz (Mystic River), and from a screenplay adapted by William Broyles, Jr. (Cast Away) and Oscar winner Paul Haggis (Million Dollar Baby, Crash).
February 1945. Even as victory in Europe was finally within reach, the war in the Pacific raged on. One of the most crucial and bloodiest battles of the war was the struggle for the island of Iwo Jima, which culminated with what would become one of the most iconic images in history: five Marines and a Navy corpsman raising the American flag on Mount Suribachi. The inspiring photo capturing that moment became a symbol of victory to a nation that had grown weary of war and made instant heroes of the six American soldiers at the base of the flag, some of whom would die soon after, never knowing that they had been immortalized. But the surviving flag raisers had no interest in being held up as symbols and did not consider themselves heroes; they wanted only to stay on the front with their brothers in arms who were fighting and dying without fanfare or glory.
Flags of Our Fathers is based on the bestselling book by James Bradley with Ron Powers, which chronicled the battle of Iwo Jima and the fates of the flag raisers and some of their brothers in Easy Company. Bradleys father, John "Doc" Bradley, was one of the soldiers pictured raising the flag, although James never knew the full extent of his fathers experiences until after the elder Bradleys death in 1994.
Thematically ambitious and emotionally complex, Clint Eastwood's Flags of Our Fathers is an intimate epic with much to say about war and the nature of heroism in America. Based on the non-fiction bestseller by James Bradley (with Ron Powers), and adapted by Million Dollar Baby screenwriter Paul Haggis (Jarhead screenwriter William Broyles Jr. wrote an earlier draft that was abandoned when Eastwood signed on to direct), this isn't so much a conventional war movie as it is a thought-provoking meditation on our collective need for heroes, even at the expense of those we deem heroic. In telling the story of the six men (five Marines, one Navy medic) who raised the American flag of victory on the battle-ravaged Japanese island of Iwo Jima on February 23rd, 1945, Eastwood takes us deep into the horror of war (in painstakingly authentic Iwo Jima battle scenes) while emphasizing how three of the surviving flag-raisers (played by Adam Beach, Ryan Phillippe, and Jesse Bradford) became reluctant celebrities and resentful pawns in a wartime publicity campaign after their flag-raising was immortalized by Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal in the most famous photograph in military history.
As the surviving flag-raisers reluctantly play their public roles as "the heroes of Iwo Jima" during an exhausting (but clearly necessary) wartime bond rally tour, Flags of Our Fathers evolves into a pointed study of battlefield valor and misplaced idolatry, incorporating subtle comment on the bogus nature of celebrity, the trauma of battle, and the true meaning of heroism in wartime. Wisely avoiding any direct parallels to contemporary history, Eastwood allows us to draw our own conclusions about the Iwo Jima flag-raisers and how their postwar histories (both noble and tragic) simultaneously illustrate the hazards of exploited celebrity and society's genuine need for admirable role models during times of national crisis. Flags of Our Fathers defies the expectations of those seeking a more straightforward war-action drama, but it's richly satisfying, impeccably crafted film that manages to be genuinely patriotic (in celebrating the camaraderie of soldiers in battle) while dramatizing the ultimate futility of war. Eastwood's follow-up film, Letters from Iwo Jima, examines the Iwo Jima conflict from the Japanese perspective. --Jeff Shannon
Beyond Flags of Our Fathers
Other World War II DVDs
Essential DVDs by Director Clint Eastwood
Flags of Our Fathers by James Bradley
Excellent! Clint Eastwood has really outdone himself with this movie!Published 19 days ago by Ashlee Fetherolf
What a great look at our true hero's and the brutal effects of warPublished 28 days ago by michael j sarsfield
very touching movie, its based on real life events, it stars Paul Walker, great movie for any Paul Walker collector.Published 1 month ago by Rachel
Great movie. No problems with product or delivery. Thanks Amazon!Published 1 month ago by Ron S. Holt
The story of the flag-raisers of Iwo Jima is a fascinating one. From the perhaps not-so-common knowledge that the picture was actually of the second flag raised on the mountain,... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Zachary Koenig
A most excellent film. One of the few times the book and the film do this story of horrific battle justice. The psychological aftermath of what they endured is beyond reason. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Sailer Bob of Santa Cruz CA.
|Topic||From this Discussion|
|Letters from Iwo Jima is the far superior of the two||
I would say that "Letters from Iwo Jima" succeeds because it tells a straight forward story. "Flags of our Fathers" jumped around alot and constantly demanded that the viewer refocus their attention on a different part of the story. Iwo Jima focused specifically on the... Read More
Mar 6, 2007 by Craig Ian Hutson | See all 2 posts
I just received this today. There are zero special features; also the Amazon description which lists "2 discs" is wrong -- there is only one disc with the feature film plus trailers for Letters from Iwo Jima and Babel.
Feb 19, 2007 by Russell Webb | See all 3 posts
|Letters of Iwo Jima or Flags of Our Fathers?||
"Letters" - for some reason I became more emotionally involved with the characters and story with "Letters" than wth "Flags". It would be nice if they released an HD-DVD multi-disc retrospective special edition of Letters instead of just "Flags"
Dec 11, 2007 by Techiedude | See all 4 posts
|FIVE-disc Flags/Letters set announced for 22 May!||Be the first to reply|
|Black & White only?||Be the first to reply|