The Last Full Measure             review by Bobby Blakey

Some of the best movies out there are based on true life stories. They are typically filled with emotion, inspiration and situations that will infuriate you. This latest, The Last Full Measure features a great cast including Sebastian Stan, Christopher Plummer, William Hurt, Diane Ladd, Amy Madigan, Bradley Whitford, Ed Harris and Samuel L. Jackson. Could this powerful film do this story justice or will it fail to get the recognition it deserves?

 

The Last Full Measure follows the true story of William H. Pitsenbarger, a U.S. Air Force medic who personally saved over sixty men before making the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam’s bloodiest battle. Three decades later, Pentagon staffer Scott Huffman investigates a Congressional Medal of Honor request made by Pitsenbarger’s mission partner and parents. Huffman interviews Army vets to learn more about Pitsenbarger’s courageous acts – and uncovers a high-level conspiracy behind the medal’s denial.

 

Going into this movie I had seen some of the trailer, but that was about it. Knowing the synopsis of the film gave me hope of what could be a really powerful film and it delivered. It’s a slow paced film by design that interchanges with Sebastian Stan’s character as he interviews and investigates this situation and the events how they played out in the Vietnam War. There is plenty of war action during these flashback sequences that pull no punches to get the feel and costs of war across to the audience. These are intense moments, but the real emotion is back home after its all said and done.

 

There is a ton of the political red tape that he deals with that is pure nonsense, but sadly no doubt happens more often than not. This impressive cast all do a great job with Samuel L. Jackson offering up one of the more emotional roles than he has in some time. He is so good here and was great to see him getting

offer something new and powerful. Christopher Plummer, Ed Harris and William Hurt are all great, but easily the best of the bunch was the late great Peter Fonda. All of them are dealing with varying issues from the role, but its Fonda’s character that is the most mentally affected and is so sad to watch.

 

You would think that watching everything these guys go through in and out of war would be the most heart-wrenching, but you would be wrong. The final sequence of the film knocks it out of the park and will have the tears flowing in even the most hardened person. It was so powerful and perfect that it capped this great film to perfection. I am bummed this film didn’t get the run it deserved, but hope people will give it a chance because it is a damn good film that not only does justice to this story, but also to the power of the veterans impact and the sad effects they deal with forever.

 

Join the fight on and off the battlefield when The Last Full Measure available now on digital and then on Blu-ray and DVD on April 21st from Lionsgate Home Entertainment.   

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