- Running time:
- 94 minutes
- Josh Brolin -
- Amir Bar-Lev
- Official Movie Web Site:
- Overall User Rating:
- (0 ratings)
In 2002, Pat Tillman gave up a promising NFL career to join the U.S. military and was deployed to Iraq. By 2004 he was dead. According to the military he died heroically engaging the enemy in battle. It wasn’t until later that the truth came out: Tillman was killed by “friendly fire,” aggravated by the “fog of war.” His family pressed for an investigation into both Pat’s death and the military cover-up, ultimately resulting in a Congressional hearing.
The buzz: Several years have passed since Tillman dominated headlines. His story was well documented in the press and two major books—Jon Krakauer’s “Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman” and Tillman’s mother’s “Boots On the Ground By Dusk: Searching for Answers in the Death of Pat Tillman.” Now documentarian Amir Bar-Lev (“My Kid Could Paint That”) brings the harrowing details to the screen featuring intimate interviews with Tillman’s family, his widow Marie and some of his fellow soldiers.
The verdict: In the rush to declare Tillman an American hero and bolster support for the war, the military inadvertently turned a fallen soldier into a lightning rod for passionate feelings on all sides of a controversial war. Bar-Lev’s film restores the humanity to a sensational tale that devolved into arguments over whether or not Tillman was a patriot or a dissenter, a symbol for the left or the right. “The Tillman Story” explores Tillman as a full, complicated individual, as remembered by some of the people who knew him best. Yet even they admit Tillman’s story is more than any article, book or film could ever hope to fully represent. Constructed with passion, insight and an appreciation for healthy skepticism, “Tillman” is a superior documentary and an essential, engaging reminder that truth can be messy, difficult and sometimes frustratingly out of reach.
Did you know? The film’s original title, “I’m Pat F***ing Tillman!” came from what were reportedly Tillman’s final words as he attempted to get his fellow soldiers to stop firing.