WWII American Army Medic Desmond T. Doss, who served during the Battle of Okinawa, refuses to kill people and becomes the first Conscientious Objector in American history to win the Congressional Medal of Honor.
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A brutally uplifting film. Gorgeously shot, with each performance affecting, even if a bit cliched (not necessarily the worst thing in this case). The fighting sequences contain a sustained, uninterrupted intensity that may be unmatched in war films.
[Bros before rows of foes] (w/Rafael Fonseca)Gibson's cradled by Malick & Eastwood in a war flick for the ages. Roman rope ladders towards black-holes of despair.Convictions, emotions, heroism + the power of 'No sir, I will not obey. I will not bear arms'. In an age of unforgiving demeanors & total lack of tolerance for other's beliefs, creeds and faiths this is almost a pro-Islam film. Respect me> I'll respect thee.
More than religion, more than war or love or brotherhood or patriotism, one thing is true in HACKSAW RIDGE: Mel Gibson is a damn good director. His work is vital. The images and rhythmic editing serve more than just story; they have a very specific imprint. Grotesque violence and Christian themes are front and center. But so are moments of sheer beauty and transcendence. Love him or hate him, Crazy Mel knows cinema.
A visceral and often upsetting experience that shows the power of Gibson's direction and establishes Andrew Garfield as a serious adult actor. Scripting, though awash in genre clichés, still manages to tell a spellbinding unique tale based on a true story. Cinematography, editing and design are exceptional especially the perfectly timed battle sequences. Of note is the supporting turn by Luke Bracey as Smitty.
As an artist, Mel Gibson has always made violence one of his central tools. "Hacksaw Ridge" sees Gibson painting with his boldest and most impressionistic colors yet, setting old-fashioned Hollywood melodrama against surreal battle sequences. On his pilgrim's progress, Andrew Garfield descends into underworlds both literal and figurative. In fact, a more apt title for this film might have simply been "Hell."
Sentimental in an old-school way, but it feels earned by heart-rending performances and wartime chaos that is genuinely frightening -- when we arrived at the theatre, it was cordoned off until just before the film began so the previous audience's vomit could be cleaned up. Vaughn, Weaving and Garfield are standouts. Surprising humour is abundant. A tender, human story of conviction and passion.
Five stars is simply not enough for this masterpiece. Mel Gibson reminds us that he can still make great films like Braveheart. Andrew Garfield gives a stellar performance. Gibson brings us a film packed with so much emotion and intensity that makes Saving Private Ryan look like a church picnic. Here's hoping we get more masterpieces like this from Gibson. This is filmmaking right here.
An ideal way for Mel Gibson to get his directorial career back on track, Hacksaw Ridge is a gorgeously shot and admirably told parable on the virtues of pacifism contrasted with unapologetic violence. The war scenes - while unable to match the sheer quality and strength of the first half's boot camp scenes - have a great sense of spatial awareness, and almost makes you forget how heavy-handed most of the film is.