3 February 2017.
HACKSAW RIDGE (Tu ne tueras point) ****
This is the true story of Desmond Doss (touchingly played by Andrew Garfield), a conscientious objector from Virginia who refused to touch a rifle during WWII. Despite that fact, he managed to save more than seventy of his comrades during a horrific battle with the Japanese on Hacksaw Ridge in Okinawa.
Mel Gibson, director, is back with a vengeance in this deeply moving and powerful tribute to incredible heroism born of a profound goodness and faith. His film is actually two stories, one of the young man’s falling head-over-heels in love with the girl of his life, and the other of his enlistment in the army to defend his country. The brilliantly choreographed battle scenes are shattering, the camaraderie heartening. I had not seen war like this since Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan” or the two WWII films by Clint Eastwood.
While the innocence, romance and bucolic feel of the first part leaves you charmed, the brutality of the second half is like a fist in the stomach. But I believe that is exactly what Gibson wanted to convey – the two contrasting worlds of a true hero, with the end showing tributes from those who served with or were saved by him. And Gibson (Oscar-nominated for Best Director) has done it here with great fervor and the talent he has often shown in the past. This is a grand, emotionally-draining film.
Superb **** Very Good *** Good ** Mediocre * Miserable – no stars
Neptune Ravar Ingwersen reviews film extensively for publications in Switzerland. She views 4 to 8 films a week and her aim is to sort the wheat from the chaff for readers.