Gone with the Wind | ★★★★★★★★★★

Ann and I watched this epic film last night. A few thoughts:

    •   Directing of the burning of Atlanta was spectacular;
    •   Unbelievable cinematography for a movie made in 1939;
    •   Clark Gable should have got the Oscar for his brilliant performance;
    •   Vivien Leigh made Scarlett come off the pages of the book;
    •   Great onscreen chemistry between Gable and Leigh;
    •   The backdrop of the South in the Civil War was heartbreaking;
    •   Hattie McDaniel was simply wonderful as Mammy;
    •   I loved the contrast in character between Melanie and Scarlett;
    •   The movie showed the different sides of what it means to be honorable;
    •   I think it is one of the best movies of all time.

I love this movie and, on a scale of ten, give it ★★★★★★★★★★.

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Unbroken | ★★★★★★★★★☆

This was a great movie to watch so close to Veteran's Day. It reminded me of people, like my son, who voluntarily risked so much to serve our country.

Unbroken is a real epic one about Louis Zamperini. Olympic runner. World War II Army Air Corps’ bombardier. Survivor of a plane crash that left him, and two comrades, stranded on a raft in open sea for 47 days. Brutally mistreated prisoner of war - for over two years, he suffered from disease, exposure, starvation, and near-daily beatings from guards. Louie is the definition of what it means to be unbroken.

The movie will make you cry if you let it. I loved watching Louie grow up. With the help of his older brother, he went from juvenile delinquent to a runner that was destined to break the 4 minute mile years before Roger Bannister. In pursuit of Olympic records, this amazing man heard the call to military service.

I loved the movie and, on a scale of ten, give it ★★★★★★★★★☆.

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Reflections from Private Bob

Here I am a few weeks after I entered the US Army in October 1968. That day in October, when I raised my hand and became a soldier, seems so long ago. Yet it seems like yesterday. I can feel the fear of entering military service knowing that my friends John and Joey had recently died in Vietnam. I remember being drafted and knowing that I did not want to fight in Vietnam. That trip to the recruiter was deeply driven by a desire to find a path that did not include the War in Vietnam. I signed up for an extra year to serve in the US Army Air Command working on missiles with nuclear capability.

I served stateside for three years at a missile firing range in New Mexico. During my military service I grew up a lot. I learned valuable life skills - LOL, like doing my own laundry. I developed technical and interpersonal skills that would last me a lifetime. I met my first wife Ellen. I got outside of my comfort level in a major way as I learned to live away from home and my family. In the end, I wonder what my life would have been like if I had not been drafted.

... reposted from November, 2014