This was not Hollywood-glam of version of war, this was the real thing. The sound of bullets were cracks -- not booms -- this is exactly how my husband described it when bullets whizzed by his Kevlar. In the opening scene there were soldiers talking about drinking before going to war; their personalities were shining through. In the next scene, an IED exploded; I was definitely startled by the magnitude of the blast.
These men had a bond that is undeniable, they were brothers in war. I started to love these soldiers as I watched each interview. I began to notice how young they are, and how tough this 15- month deployment has been. I was definitely more invested in this movie because of all the information I’ve seen in the last couple of months and the fact that my husband deployed three times.
A couple of things really stood out to me while watching. The first was the title of the movie. It was named after a Juan “Doc” Restrepo that was shown in the beginning of the film. He later died while fighting. The soldiers ended up naming their outpost after him.
Second was the comment that one soldier made while reflecting on his time at war. He said that fighting it such an adrenaline high, nothing is going to compare to it. When asked what he was going to do when he got home, how he was going to get that same high, I could tell he was worried. His response: “I don’t know.”
I know my husband is the same way. He is always trying to find things that “are fast enough to be stupid on.”
The third standout point of the film was when another soldier was killed and others wounded in a fierce fire fight. One of the soldiers knew something happened, that someone died. He broke into a panicky wail; his heart was shattered. That’s when my tears started to flow. His emotional reaction to a fellow soldier being killed was almost too much for me to bear.
In the end, I think this was an accurate portrayal of war without a political agenda. I was comforted by how swiftly they care for the wounded and evac them to the nearest medical facility. It warmed my heart to see the camaraderie of the soldiers with one another. I have seen it outside of war with my husband and his men, but to see it while fighting just proves that war isn’t all bad. They can still have fun, joke around and show how much they care for one another.