Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Sergeant York |
Two-Disc Special Edition
Actors: Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Joan Leslie, George Tobias, Stanley Ridges
Director: Howard Hawks
Genres: Classics, Drama, Military & War
Story of World War I hero who captured German position single-handedly. Film also portrays York's earlier life in the mountains of Tennessee.
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Member Movie Reviews
Cynthia A. (lalady) from ROCK SPRING, GA
Reviewed on 9/19/2009...
This tops my list of favorites. If you want to watch or own a war movie that is a good true story, this one is it. Born and raised in the Tennessee mountains, York learned to shoot and hunt at a very young age. Once wild and unruly, he later became a born again Christian and after being drafted into the US Army sought exemption as a conscientious objector. He believed that to kill went against his religion, but to everyone's surprise, he ends up being the highest decorated soldier of World War 1.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
The perfect film to watch each and every Memorial Day
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 08/03/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Gary Cooper was 40 years old when he made "Sergeant York," and his Southern accent is weak at best, but those things do not end up detracting all that much from his performance or this film. Directed in 1941 by Howard Hawks, "Sergeant York" has strong propagandistic elements. A whiskey-drinking hell-raiser, Alvin C. York undergoes a religious conversation when lighting strikes his gun and almost kills him. His goal in life becomes getting himself a piece of bottom land so he can propose to Gracie Williams (Joan Leslie). Things go against him, but Alvin holds his temper and does what the Good Book tell him to do. Then World War I breaks out and Alvin is drafted. Unable to get status as a conscientious objector because of his religious beliefs, Alvin has to come to terms with the obligations of citizenship versus the dictates of scripture. The film is surprisingly even handed in showing Alvin debating the matter with his superiors. In the end he comes to the only conclusion possible for men of conscience forced to go to war: killing is justified to save lives.On the Argonne Forest battlefield Alvin, made a corporal because of his marksmanship, becomes a hero when his unit is trapped and he single-handedly kills 25 and captures 132 prisoners. Called the "greatest civilian solider of the war" by General Pershing, York received the Medal of Honor, France's Croix de Guerre, and basically every high medal the Allies could bestow upon him. But while the film does a first-rate job of showing York's heroic exploits, ultimately it is more about the man that the solider. Cooper's sense of dignity is well-suited to the role, which gives more weight to York's life in the hills of Tennessee than to the war in Europe. What he learned back home clearly stands Alvin in good stead on the battlefield.The supporting cast of "Sergeant York" is truly outstanding, with George Tobias as "Pusher" Ross, Ward Bond as Ike Botkin and Robert Porterfield as Zeb Andrews. Both Walter Brennan as Pastor Rosier Pile and Margaret Wycherly as Mother York received well deserved Oscar nominations in the supporting category. Brennan marvelously underplays his role as Alvin's spiritual leader while Wycherly is simply the anchor for the entire film. Mother York says little and moves slowly, but everything comes out through her eyes. The scene where Alvin finally gets home from the war and sees his mother at the train station is especially touching: his face lights up completely and her "I'm right glad to see you, son" is the equivalent of other people crying and screaming for joy. In addition to Cooper winning his first Oscar as Best Actor, William Holmes receives one for Film Editing. This is one of those movies I never get tired of seeing and it remains the ideal film to watch on Memorial Day."
A wonderful tribute to a brave Tennessean!
Dave | Tennessee United States | 04/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a native Tennessean, and I grew up hearing stories about one of Tennessee's greatest war heroes, Sgt. Alvin C. York. There's even a statue of him at the Nashville capitol. York was one of the most unlikely heroes of World War I, yet he surprised both his comrades and his commanding officers with his reckless bravery in combat. Although the propaganda effect of the movie was intended to get America involved in World War II, the heartfelt performances, especially from oscar winner Gary Cooper and Walter Brennan, make this a must-see classic.
Gary Cooper stars as Alvin C. York, and as the film begins, he and his two drinking pals, Ike (Ward Bond) and Buck (Noah Berry Jr.) are causing mischief in their small community in rural Tennessee. Pastor Pile (Walter Brennan) continually tries to help York change his wicked ways and become a faithful Christian, but York is in no mood for preaching. When Alvin meets lovely young Gracie (Joan Leslie) he immediately falls in love and starts working for a local farmer to buy land so that he can ask Gracie to marry him. But he's double-crossed by the greedy farmer, who sells the land to York's worst enemy. Grabbing his rifle, York sets out on a rainy night to take revenge on the evil farmer, only to have his gun destroyed by lightning. That's when Alvin finally realizes that the Lord wants him to change his wicked ways, so he quits drinking and becomes a devout Christian.
The problem is, just as York is changing his life America declares war on Germany, but he insists on staying out of it, saying "I ain't a-goin' to war. War is killin' and the Book is agin' killin', so war is agin' the Book." But his draft board won't listen to his religious outburst and Pastor Pile convinces him to join the army rather than be arrested. Next, York is in France, where his years of hunting experience have made him a crackshot, and he finds himself promoted to corporel. When his small unit is pinned down during a bloody assault against German machine-gun nests and his superiors are killed or wounded, Alvin takes charge and bravely attacks on his own, killing at least 20 enemy soldiers and capturing well over a hundred.
York is decorated for gallantry, promoted to sergeant, and returns home to a nation-wide heroes welcome, finally coming back to Tennessee where his family and his girlfriend Gracie have a big surprise of their own. Though the Southern accents in this are a little too forced, and the portrayel of Army officers is way too flattering, this enduring classic has always held a special place in my heart. Believe it or not, much of the script is taken directly from Sgt. York's diary, and York himself served as an advisor throughout the filming. It was York who insisted on Gary Cooper playing his character, and Cooper ended up giving perhaps the strongest performance of his career. I only hope we don't have to wait much longer before this classic gets a dvd release."
5 stars only because...
C. Williams | Chatham, VA | 04/08/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I can't give it 6. This is probably one of the top 5 movies ever! Cooper is phenomenal. The real Alvin York, probably America's least known hero, told Hollywood that he would allow them to make the movie if Cooper portrayed him, they told the whole story, and no glamour girl portrayed the women. This movie hits the mark. While it does show how President Wilson abused the rights of the religions that are against fighting and war, I believe the message of a man's convictions and how he must kill to save other lives is powerful and applicable in today's society. Believable presentation of York's life before, during, and after the war is the hallmark of the movie. A classic for generations to come."