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HACKSAW RIDGE – Rupert Gregson-Williams

November 1, 2016 3 comments

hacksawridgeOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

The island of Okinawa was one of the key battlegrounds during World War II, where Allied forces led by the United States Army and Navy fought against eight divisions of the Imperial Japanese Army for supremacy. It was also one of the bloodiest in the Pacific, with an estimated total of over 82,000 direct casualties on both sides. The battle lasted from April until June 1945, and ranged all over the island, including an area colloquially known as Hacksaw Ridge, a large and imposing cliff face with a plateau at the top. It was here that one of the most extraordinary acts of heroism in the entire war took place, when US Army medic Desmond Doss personally saved the lives of 75 wounded soldiers while under tremendous, relentless enemy fire. The most amazing aspect of this story, however, is that Doss was a conscientious objector and a member of the Seventh Day Adventist church, and as such refused to handle a firearm at any point in his military service; despite this, Doss was subsequently awarded the Medal of Honor, the United States’s highest military decoration, becoming the first conscientious objector to be so honored. Director Mel Gibson’s film Hacksaw Ridge tells Doss’s life story, all the way from his humble origins in rural Virginia; it stars Andrew Garfield as Doss, along with Vince Vaughan, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths, and Teresa Palmer in supporting roles. Read more…