Courage Under Fire

directed by Edward Zwick
Category: "War"
Year of Release:1996
Date Added:03/06/2015
Date Watched:03/06/2015
Description:Colonel Serling (Denzel Washington) is a tank commander during Desert Storm. His tanks get mixed with enemy tanks, and in the confusion, Serling gives an order that destroys one of his own. Plagued by the guilt, he turns to drink and is almost cashiered, but instead is transferred to a unit that investigates the worthiness of possible Medal of Honor recipients. He is assigned to the case of Karen Walden (Meg Ryan), a pilot whose helicopter is shot down on a rescue mission. At first, the survivors of her crew paint her as a coward, but Serling detects discrepancies and investigates further. In the end, he finds out that Walden's co-pilot was wounded. The other three men wanted to abandon him and run, but Walden refused. When a rescue copter arrived, she covered the retreat of those who were trying to mutiny against her and allowed them to get to safety. They reported her dead so that they wouldn't stay under fire for the time it would take to go get her. She is killed when a U.S. plane drops napalm on the scene, thinking only enemy troops remain. Plagued with guilt, one of Walden's men commits suicide, one is a head case in a hospital and the third, Ilario (Matt Damon) becomes a heroin junkie. It is Ilario that finally tells Serling the truth. In seeking answers for Walden's case, Serling puts his own demons to rest.
My Rating:6

Reviews for Courage Under Fire

Review - Courage Under Fire

It was OK. I like Denzel Washington. Meg Ryan's character, whatever she was supposed to portray, pretty much just confirmed my reservations about women in combat. The entire time, the movie felt like a political statement, not against war but against government cover-ups, but it didn't convince me to become passionate about the issue.
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