18 January 2019 | eddieelander
War is Fought Overseas and at Home
United States war veterans are susceptible to many effects after combat, specifically PTSD and other mental issues. These usually are not curable and require a lot of time and rehabilitation to suppress the side effects. The movie Thank You for Your Service shows exactly how war veterans have to deal with what they experienced overseas in combat zones. It is a great example of how the people are unaware of how drastic the change from war to reality can be, and how it is an emergency because veterans are committing suicide at increasing numbers.
The movie starts with Sgt. Adam Schumann (Miles Teller) fighting in Iraq and trying to save his fellow soldier Michael Emory (Scott Hase) who had been shot in the head. Sgt. Schumann feels very guilty throughout the entire movie because of how he physically handled Emory while he was saving him. The movie then shifts towards post war life for Sgt. Schumann, and his two best friends who fought alongside him, Solo Aeiti (Beulah Koale) and Billy Walker (Joe Cole). All three soldiers find it very hard to adapt to a civilian lifestyle so quickly. Both Adam and Billy have thoughts of suicide, and Solo has trouble with memory due to brain trauma during battle. The movie does a great job displaying how PTSD is a very common and horrible disorder that veterans have to fight.
Both Miles Teller and Beulah Koale do an excellent job of portraying veterans who are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. I feel that they make the audience feel very comfortable with the idea of this being a true story. Miles and Beulah do not exaggerate their roles of being mentally scarred from war, and specifically Miles, handles himself just as I would imagine a war veteran to. The acting overall allowed for me to become engrossed in their issues.
I feel that the director James Hall did a fantastic job with the layout of this film. Traditionally a war movie will contain much more scenes of war and death. The movie had scenes in the beginning of what would be the conflict later in the film. Instead of constantly showing war footage that is unrelated, Hall uses the perfect amount of battle footage to inform the viewer of the situation. Hall had previously written the movie American Sniper which had shown how war had affected Chris Kyle over multiple deployments overseas. However, Hall made this film completely stand apart from his previous movie, because in American Sniper the majority of the movie was about Chris Kyle's (Bradley Cooper) military accomplishments and in Thank You for Your Service he focused on the post-war effects. However, an issue that I had found with this film is that it was stated it was "Based on a true story" however the book is accurate to the true story, and the film's script moved away from the actual story. This takes away from the way society should interact with war veterans. The film did tend to get a little too dramatic at times but that is expected for an emotional settings.
Overall, Thank You for Your Service was well written, directed, and acted. Even though it wasn't exactly like the book, it did a great job of explaining how men and women come back home from war, and can't transition smoothly. It keeps the viewer connected and intrigued. There isn't much to dislike about soldiers trying to find peace with their lives after years of combat.