For Your Courage, For Your Love, For Your Sacrifice “THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE”

(L to R) Adam Schumann (MILES TELLER), Solo Aeiti (BEULAH KOALE) and Will Waller (JOE COLE) in DreamWorks Pictures’ "Thank You for Your Service." The drama follows a group of U.S. soldiers returning from Iraq who struggle to integrate back into family and civilian life, while living with the memory of a war that threatens to destroy them long after they’ve left the battlefield.

Release Date: October 26, 2017
Running Time: 1 hour & 48 minutes
Rated R
Written and Directed By: Jason Hall
Grade: B

U.S. Army soldiers Adam Schumann, Tausolo “Solo” Aieti, and Will Waller return to Kansas from Iraq after serving in the infantry battalion known as the 2-16 Rangers. Adam struggles to fit back into his family’s day-to-day routine, as he tries to reconnect with his daughter and bond with his infant son. As the days go by, he also has trouble finding work, so the memories of his last deployment haunt him on a daily basis.

Despite the fact that Solo’s wife wants to start a family, Solo desperately wishes to return to Iraq to serve more time and visit Fort Riley multiple times. Solo attributes his salvation from the drug world to his enlisting in the army. Due to his memory loss from multiple improvised explosive device (IED) blasts, Solo is denied deployment.  He continues to struggle with his post war demons, while his unborn child grows in his wife’s womb.

The third soldier who returns to Kansas with Adam and Solo is Will Waller. On the flight home, Waller is ecstatic about seeing his fiancé Tracy and getting married.  Not only does she not meet him at the airport, he returns to an empty house and bank account.  He tries in vain to reach her on the phone, but she does not return any of his calls.  Waller’s solution to his problem adds additional stress to his friends who are already barely keeping it together.

Adam’s wife, Saskia, supports his transition into civilian life, but becomes very concerned when Adam refuses to talk to her about his post war mental issues. Solo’s wife completely shuts him out when she witnesses the harrowing effects of PTSD. Caught in a system that is ill prepared to provide assistance to the growing number of the soldiers who are ravaged by the effects of PTSD, Adam must find a way to become whole again, while helping the even more damaged Solo.

There are hundreds of thousands of veterans seeking help!

Thank Your For Your Service is a honest portrayal of what our amazing military grapple with on a daily basis when they return home from war.   It brings to light their struggle and the struggle of millions of American men and women.  They grapple with finding a job, fitting back into society, noises that remind them of war and the constant battle to seek and obtain help. The poignant film seeks to raise awareness

Jason Hall, in his directorial debut does a fantastic overall job.  The script is tight and the acting ensemble is terrific.  Miles Teller (Only the Brave, Whiplash and the Divergent Series) continues to impress me with his dramatic acting skills.  I also thought Beulah Koale’s portrayal of Solo resonated with the audience.   Both did an exceptional job the film based on a book by David Finkel.

 Although it was difficult to watch due to some graphic scenes, I am glad that I screened it.  Living in a military town, it gives me a deeper understanding and motivates makes me to do more.  Overall, the powerful film is thought-provoking and heartbreaking at the same time.  It should appeal to an audience that supports the military, loves war films and deeply moving dramas. ~ A.S. MacLeod

No, I’m not alright.

Jason Hall storms the gates in his directorial debut with Thank You for Your Service. As the audience quickly learns the meaning of the tongue in cheek title, they are forced to plummet in the gritty aftermath of serving in a military war.

The eye opening biographical war drama film is also penned by Jason Hall, who also wrote the screenplay for American Sniper. Inspired by the real life events depicted in Pulitzer Prize winning writer David Finkel’s book of the same title, Hall doesn’t stray too far from the facts and succeeds in opening the eyes and hearts of the viewer.

As the central character, Miles Teller, realistically portrays a man whose suffering runs so deep, I could see the character’s pain in his heart through his eyes. I first noticed Teller in his stellar performance in Whiplash and he continues to grow as an actor with War Dogs, Only the Brave, and Thank You for Your Service.

Lesser known actors, Beulah Koale, Scott Haze, and Joe Cole provide outstanding performances in their supporting roles with each sharing a different way of working through their pain. Amy Schumer also surprised me with her brief but important role as the wife of a fallen soldier in Schumann’s squad. The soundtrack provides a heartbeat to accentuate the intensity of the drama and is provided by perhaps the industry’s most talent film score composers, Thomas Newman.

With all of the aforementioned talent on and behind the camera, I must also mention the cinematographer, Roman Vasynov, who exquisitely captures the war scenes and the impact they have on in the scenes back home. March into the theater to experience the impact for yourself. ~Movie Buffette

 I was a good soldier. I had purpose and I loved it.”

Starring:

Miles Teller as Adam Schumann
Haley Bennett as Saskia Schumann
Beulah Koale as Tausolo Aiea
Joe Cole as Will Waller
Brad Beyer as James Foster
Amy Schumer as Amanda Doster
Keisha Castle-Hughes as Alea
Scott Haze as Michael Adam Emory

About Leigh Ann Rassler

october, 2021

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