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on March 4, 2018
Simply one of the best films I have seen in a very long time. A brilliant character study of friendship, loyalty and dealing with loss. The actors truly embrace their roles and I can imagine they all took substantial pay cuts to do this film. The one thing I have been reading in the reviews of this film is that it takes a strong liberal stance, I don't think that could be farther from the truth. This film centers around death caused by war, simple, it does not take sides and remains neutral only dealing with the result of combat and does not center on the war or the politics behind it. War never changes and this film could be about any war. Well, all I can say is please give this film a shot and prepare to be impressed :)
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on January 24, 2018
This movie isn't what I expected it to be. I assumed that it would be a little more lighthearted but the fact that the comedy is sparingly sprinkled in makes this movie much more believable. It is a moving tribute to the gold star families struggling with the loss of a loved one who proudly serve their country while coming to terms with the reason or lack thereof. It also highlights the importance of friendship, family, and love regardless of time or distance. Get the tissues ready because Last Flag Flying will certainly pull at your heartstrings.
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on January 29, 2018
POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERTS

Best movie line: " I don't know but it's never the lie."

This movie calling out the lie may seem disrespectful to the military but the movie also circles back and shows that the characters come to understand that this lie could also be an act of compassion when they themselves later meet up with the mother of a fallen buddy.

I watched my daughter die a terrifying agonizing death in a hospital and then caught the hospital team in a lie totally by happenstance. The discovery of a lie can send the grieving on a long horrible journey for the truth. Forcing them to relive and relive and relive the life shattering memories, either what they witnessed or the visions of the little they've been told or know or imagine until they are satisfied they know the whole truth. In this search for truth, there is no reward only more pain until it's over.

This movie asks questions but i don't think it dictated the answers. The son was buried in his uniform and all are proud of their military service. The brotherhood they share, despite their differences, is an inspiration.

Would it have been so awful to say to their buddy's Mom, "He didn't die saving our lives. But in life, he enriched ours so much that 30 years later he lives in our hearts every day. We are here visiting you because we wanted you to know that his memory continues to inspire the loyal brotherhood he selflessly shared with all of us during his life."

..but even after what I've been through, I'm not sure of the answer to my own question.

Asking questions is an American responsibility. Should we lie about or shroud the circumstances of death for any reason? This movie asks that question.

Let us all be reminded to support our troops every way we can when they get home.
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on February 26, 2018
If your a Veteran and you served during the VN Era you will enjoy this movie. Doc the lead character is somewhat of a passive guy in my book and because of what happened in Nam look up and finds two guys that he served with to help with his son's military funeral after he was killed in Iraq. Many thing have changed over the last 30+ years and all three buddies at one time are now mismatched each having gone their own way. They try to get to know each other again. I did not find too many thing comical about this movie and my eyes welled up once or twice probably because of my own service experience. Give it a chance - it is not a war movie and as a Vet, any era, you will identify with the characters if nothing else.
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on February 6, 2018
It was a good movie. Being a veteran of the Army and Navy I found it fairly accurate as far as how the government works. I didn’t think it was Un - American and it did focus on the prevailing attitudes of the wars at that time. Four stars only because I thought it could have had a few more comedic moments.
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on February 2, 2018
Funny, sad and the writing was marvelous. The trio of actors was wonderful--Cranston, Carell, Jackson. Especially if you are over 60, it is a must see
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on February 10, 2018
SO GOOD! It was like watching a Master Class in acting from all concerned. The film was all about violence without the need to show any explicitly. It also showed the inner costs to people who are involved in any kind of warfare. My Heart thanks the film makers.
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on April 10, 2018
As a Vietnam Vet who's son Did 7 tours in Afghanistan and 6 tours in Iraq, and knowing several veterans who lost sons in the Iraqistan affairs, I find this a great tribute to the men who fight wars, and to the personal cost of war to all involved.
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on May 11, 2018
I was actually surprised at how VERY good this movie is. There are few movies I've ever watched that I would give 5 stars to, and none that I've ever reviewed. It may hold special interest for those whose families have served /are serving in the military. The acting is outstanding, and performed by some well-known (and personally favorite) actors. The story itself makes you think, and I like movies that do that; The story doesn't lend itself to pat solutions and the seemingly usual polarities we see around us every day. Most of all I think it is delicately balanced and lets us honesty see relationships similar to those we all have in our lives, "warts and all". .It isn't a melodrama, and it isn't a comedy, although there are elements of both. Your heart and your mind are likely to seriously engage if you watch this movie, which is a good thing from my perspective.
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Do all war dead die as heroes? Sometimes the deepest wounds are not physical, but emotional.

"Last Flag Flying" is about three Vietnam veterans dealing with their tour in Vietnam together thirty years ago. One, "Doc," (Steve Carell) is the one who sacrificed the most. Reverend Mueller (Lawrence Fishburn) is the one with the most guilt over what happened to Doc and also the most reluctant to relive his past, and hard-drinking Sal (Bryan Cranston) is the one who doesn't seem to want to grow up. Perhaps that steel plate in his head is to blame. So what exactly happened to these three men so long ago?

It's early December 2003. Doc's only son Larry Jr died two days ago. He's still grieving over the loss of his wife earlier in the year to breast cancer. Losing his son now means he's lost all that he has worked for since Vietnam. He searches for his old Vietnam buddies on the internet and lands one rainy night in Sal's bar. He has a favor to ask of him. Sal agrees. Doc then takes him to the Baptist Church where Mueller preaches and over dinner at the Reverend's house opens up about his visit. Both Sal and the Reverend pay back their dues to Doc. It's never revealed in the story why, but Doc was sentenced to three years in the Navy Brig at Portsmouth, NH, serving two years for good behavior. When he was released, he simply made Portsmouth, NH his home and settled down.

The three combat buddies travel together to Dover AFB and then on to New Hampshire where Larry Jr will be buried. Whether in the U-Haul truck, on the train, or in the train station, cryptic bits of their time in Vietnam together are revealed. The Reverend's calm reasoning against Sal's still rebellious, atheist ways is well-balanced to Sal's at times over-the-top antics, or Doc's quiet, subdued comments. There are times the story goes off topic, such as with Sal's fascination with his new cellphone.

The one thing that bothers me is the characterization of the Mortuary Affairs Officer, Colonel Wilits (Yul Vazquez). He is obnoxious, crude and wears his hair out of military regulations. (Why can't military personnel in Hollywood wear correct hair cuts?) Otherwise the acting is top notch, to include smaller roles by Deanna Reed-Foster, who plays the Reverend's wife Ruth, and J. Quinton Johnson, who plays Corporal Washington

The tone of this movie is somber, dealing with death and grief and old wounds, but there are some comedic moments. The most memorable one is of the three buddies reminiscing on the train in the cargo compartment. Doc finally lets loose with a heartwarming, hysterical laugh. The film finishes with a serious note: do we remember our war dead as embellished heroes, or do we remember them for how they truly died? Should the truth ever be revealed?

There are also references to the government lying to the public about war, both for Vietnam and Iraq. This may offend some veterans (it doesn't me) The ones who have a right to speak their minds about war are the ones who actually fought in one. As Sal says in the beginning, "Every generation fights its war."

4+
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