19-year-old Billy Lynn is brought home for a victory tour after a harrowing Iraq battle. Through flashbacks the film shows what really happened to his squad - contrasting the realities of war with America's perceptions.
Two-time Academy Award® winner Ang Lee brings his extraordinary vision to Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, based on the widely-acclaimed, bestselling novel. The film is told from the point of view of 19-year-old private Billy Lynn (newcomer Joe Alwyn) who, along with his fellow soldiers in Bravo Squad, becomes a hero after a harrowing Iraq battle and is brought home temporarily for a victory tour. Through flashbacks, culminating at the spectacular halftime show of the Thanksgiving Day football game, the film reveals what really happened to the squad - contrasting the realities of the war with America's perceptions. The film also stars Kristen Stewart, Chris Tucker, Garrett Hedlund, with Vin Diesel, and Steve Martin. Lee used new technology, shooting at an ultra-high frame rate for the first time in film history, to create an immersive digital experience helping him dramatize war in a way never seen before. Lee directed and produced the film, from a screenplay by Jean-Christophe ... Written by
Sony Pictures Entertainment
US Army squads are not designated with letters, they are numbered based on their respective platoon and company's table of organization (so many squads to a platoon, so many platoons to a company, companies to a battalion, battalions to a brigade, brigades to a division). Platoons are numbered in the same manner, respective to their company. A company may be designated with a letter (in the cases of companies that do not deploy except as part of their parent battalion) or with a number (in the cases of "modular" companies that may deploy separately from their parent battalion and placed under the control of a "modular" battalion headquarters when they arrive in theater). Billy's squad would be correctly designated as the 2nd Squad, (numbered) Platoon, (lettered) Company, (numbered) Battalion, (numbered) Brigade of the (numbered) Division. Since this designation is fairly complicated for non-military personnel, Billy and his squad mates would most likely be recognized as Soldiers from the same Division (since they would all wear that Division's patch), without mention of their specific unit within the Division.
The reasoning for Billy's squad being called "Bravo Squad" is explained in the book as being a result of incorrect reporting when the video footage of their battle was aired on the news. See more »
You hear that? That's the sound on us about to get fucked.
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Ben Johnson's novel has been exceptionally well adapted for the screen by Jean- Christophe Castelli and directed with the expected sensitivity of Ang Lee. It is a kick in the gut for those who see it an anti-war statement placed in front of us as the never- ending wars in the Middle East continue to fester and destroy lives on all sides of the war zone and beyond. But it is also a biting statement about the time in which we live, a time when entertainment and gross spending of money is directed toward the insatiable appetite for big shows and stars and shallow moments of pleasure that appear to obsess us. The manner in which returning soldiers face 'instant glory' is overshadowed by the inherent bully-ism by a public that does not understand the cancer of war and how it metastasizes throughout our troubled planet.
The film is told from the point of view of 19-year-old private Billy Lynn (Joe Alwyn) who, along with his fellow soldiers in Bravo Squad (Garrett Hedlund, Arturo Castro, Mason Lee, Astro, Beau Knapp, Ismael Cruz Cordova, Barney Harris and Vin Diesel) becomes a hero after a harrowing Iraq battle and is brought home temporarily for a victory tour. Through flashbacks, culminating at the spectacular halftime show of the Thanksgiving Day football game in Dallas, Texas, the film reveals what really happened to the squad - contrasting the realities of the war with America's perceptions. Billy's family's response to his Silver Star heroism is conflicted with Billy's damaged sister Kathryn (Kristen Stewart) who pleads with Billy not to return for another tour in Iraq. Billy finds a possible entry to fame through a film about Bravo by Albert (Chris Tucker), thwarted by the wealthy insensitive would-be backer Norm (Steve Martin), an introduction to love by one of the Dallas cheerleaders Faison (Makenzie Leigh), and in the end, though disenchanted with America's reaction to what soldiers suffer in war zones, Billy makes the 'long halftime walk' back to his beloved buddies of Bravo as they prepare to return to duty.
The film seems all glitter on the surface until the inserted flashbacks of the realities of war in Iraq a factor that makes the film even more poignant as an anti-war statement. This is a strong film that will move sensitive viewers hopefully to action.
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