Under the Radar

'Hacksaw Ridge' Portrays a Different Kind of Valor


Director Mel Gibson's new movie Hacksaw Ridge brings a decidedly unique war hero to the screen, telling the story of Desmond Doss, a World War II veteran who served valiantly as an Army medic in the Pacific. He was also a conscientious objector who would not handle a weapon (although he preferred the term "conscientious cooperator"). And he singlehandedly pulled more than 70 wounded men off the battlefield at Okinawa after his unit had pulled back, a feat for which he was later awarded the Medal of Honor.

The film is exceptionally violent for a story about a man who refused to kill, but that violence only serves to drive home the risks and the magnitude of the medic's heroic deeds. It's Gibson's first film as a director in a decade and he displays the same skill with battle scenes that he brought to the Oscar Best Picture Braveheart.

Desmond Doss, Jr. and Mel Gibson joined actors Luke Bracey and Vince Vaughn at The National WWII Museum in New Orleans to screen the film and talk about the movie and the heroism of Desmond Doss. The event took place on October 25th during Game 2 of the World Series, so points to Vince for showing up when his beloved Chicago Cubs were winning that game and taking a first step towards erasing their curse.


Desmond Doss, Jr. talks about his father and the importance of a film like "Hacksaw Ridge."


Director Mel Gibson, Luke Bracey (Smitty) and Vince Vaughn (Sergeant Howell) talk about "Hacksaw Ridge" on the red carpet before a screening at The National WWII Museum.

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