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Courage Under Fire
- Denzel Washington

Overview - Following the 1991 Gulf War, Lieutenant Colonel Nathaniel Serling (Denzel Washington) is assigned to review the background of the late Captain Karen Walden (Meg Ryan), who has been posthumously nominated for a medal of honor. While investigating Walden's candidacy, Serling is forced to face his own disillusionment and guilt surrounding the war.  Read more...

 
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More About Courage Under Fire - Denzel Washington
 
 
 
Overview

Following the 1991 Gulf War, Lieutenant Colonel Nathaniel Serling (Denzel Washington) is assigned to review the background of the late Captain Karen Walden (Meg Ryan), who has been posthumously nominated for a medal of honor. While investigating Walden's candidacy, Serling is forced to face his own disillusionment and guilt surrounding the war. As he begins the interviewing process, he uncovers several inconsistencies in the stories told by the late pilot's crew. The three officers, who may or may not have been saved by the captain's actions, all give drastically different accounts of the events leading up to Walden's death. Ilario (Matt Damon) paints Walden as an unselfish, courageous hero, while the surly Monfriez (Lou Diamond Phillips) describes her as a crybaby and a coward. The third soldier, Altameyer (Seth Gilliam), lies dying in an army hospital, mumbling guilty confessions in a medicated haze. Similar to the storytelling technique used in Akira Kurosawa's RASHOMON, director Edward Zwick's COURAGE UNDER FIRE features each officer's account of the fateful incident reenacted onscreen, offering wildly diverse portrayals of Walden. Meg Ryan shines in a role that demands she play one character a multitude of ways. As Serling pieces together the radically different tales of combat, he uncovers the painful truth and simultaneously faces his own pent-up guilt regarding the war.

Cast List

Michael Moriarty - American Actor, BANG THE DRUM SLOWLY (1973)
Matt Damon - American actor, screenwriter, GOOD WILL HUNTING (1997)
Meg Ryan - American Actress, SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE (1993)
Bronson Pinchot - American TV/Film Actor
John Graysmark - Production Designer, SUPERMAN IV (1987)
James Horner - Composer, COMMANDO (1985)
Edward Zwick - Director/producer/screenwriter
John Davis - Producer
Patrick Duncan - American Director/Screenwriter
Patrick Sheane Duncan - American Director/Screenwriter
Denzel Washington - American actor, GLORY/TRAINING DAY
Joseph M. Singer - Producer
Roger Deakins - Director of Photography
Francine Jamison-Tanchuck - Costume Designer, COURAGE UNDER FIRE (1996)
Steven Rosenblum - Editor, PEARL HARBOR (2001)
Seth Gilliam - American Actor
Lou Diamond Phillips - American actor/director, LA BAMBA
Scott Glenn - Actor, JOURNEY TO THE END OF NIGHT, W.
Dan Lerner - Director, 2nd Unit Director, mostly TV movies and series
David T. Friendly - Producer

 
Details
    DVD Format
  • Format: DVD
  • Run Time: 116
  • Color Format: Color
  • UPC: 024543010838
  • Genre: Drama
  • Rating: R (MPAA) (For war violence and language.)
  • Release Date: August 2014

Related Categories:
Movies > Dramas

Related Keywords:
Action
Mystery
Thriller
War
Self-Discovery
Deception
Recommended
Military
Character Study
Melodrama
Theatrical Release

 
Movie Reviews

More Details

Synopsis:
Assigned to investigate and approve a killed-in-action helicopter pilot's candidacy to become the first female recipient of the congressional medal of honor, a disillusioned former Gulf War officer finds inconsistencies in the stories told by the late pilot's crew.

Notes:
Theatrical release: July 12, 1996. Filmed in Texas and California. COURAGE UNDER FIRE features one of Matt Damon's first major screen roles. The film's multiple-point-of-view concept is loosely based on Akira Kurosawa's 1950 film RASHOMON. Martin Ritt's THE OUTRAGE is also patterned after Kurosawa's classic film.

Reviews:
"...Denzel Washington is a potent actor in peak form....COURAGE UNDER FIRE honors its subject and its audience..." - 08/08/1996 Rolling Stone, p.68


"...Thoughtful. Intelligent. Moving. Provocative..." -- 4 out of 4 stars - 07/12/1996 USA Today, p.1D


"...[Washington gives a] haunted, nearly implosive performance." -- Rating: B+ - 08/09/1996 Entertainment Weekly, p.44


"...A carefully conceived, dramatically honorable picture that treats its subject with clarity and intelligence..." - 06/24/1996 Variety


"...Intelligent, involving and serious....Lou Diamond Phillips gives an intense, focused performance..." - 07/12/1996 Los Angeles Times, p.F1


"...Zwick's direction handles the many conflicting story possibilities with great clarity..." - 07/12/1996 Chicago Sun-Times, p.31

 
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