Thank You for Your Service (2017 film)
|Thank You for Your Service|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Jason Hall|
|Produced by||Jon Kilik|
|Screenplay by||Jason Hall|
|Based on||Thank You for Your Service|
by David Finkel
|Music by||Thomas Newman|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$9.5 million|
Thank You for Your Service is a 2017 American biographical war drama film written and directed by Jason Hall, in his directorial debut, and based on the 2013 non-fiction book of the same name by David Finkel. Finkel, a Washington Post reporter, wrote about veterans of the 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment returning to the vicinity of Fort Riley, Kansas, following a 15-month deployment in Iraq in 2007. The film is about posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depicting U.S. soldiers who try to adjust to civilian life, and stars Miles Teller, Haley Bennett, Beulah Koale, Amy Schumer and Scott Haze. Bruce Springsteen wrote a new song, "Freedom Cadence", specifically for the closing credits.
The film had its world premiere at the Heartland Film Festival on October 15, 2017, and was theatrically released in the United States on October 27, 2017, by Universal Pictures. It received generally positive reviews from critics, with praise aimed at the performances (particularly that of Teller, Bennett, and Koale), but grossed just $9 million against its $20 million budget.
After a harrowing 15-month combat experience in Iraq, the much-decorated Adam Schumann (Miles Teller) returns home to Kansas and a loving wife, Saskia (Haley Bennett). Adam and Saskia have two young children, a daughter and an infant son born while Adam was still overseas. Adam suffers from PTSD as manifest by nightmares and frequent flashbacks for which his wife convinces him to seek help from an overburdened Department of Veterans Affairs. He also receives solace from two Iraq buddies living nearby, an American Samoan, Solo Aeiti (Beulah Koale), and Billy Waller (Joe Cole), who commits suicide in front of his fiancée (Erin Darke) after discovering she has taken all his money and their child and left him.
Adam's unresolved psychological issues revolve around his failure to safely rescue a fellow soldier from a building under fire, Michael Emory (Scott Haze), who was dropped on his head and rendered hemiplegic but later expresses gratitude to Adam for being alive, and survivor's guilt about letting Sergeant First Class James Doster (Brad Beyer) take Adam's place on patrol one day. When the Humvee with Doster filling in for Adam makes a wrong turn and hits an improvised explosive device, Solo assists the men in their escape to safety, but Doster is inadvertently left behind and dies in the conflagration. Doster's grieving widow, Amanda (Amy Schumer), who is best of friends with Saskia Schumann, finally gains closure as she learns the circumstances of her husband's death towards the end of the movie and absolves Adam and Solo of responsibility for it.
Meanwhile, Solo suffers from such severe PTSD and memory loss that he is unable to fulfill a fervent desire to reenlist for another tour in Iraq. He falls in with a group of drug dealers led by a Gulf War veteran, Dante (Omar Dorsey). Adam rescues his friend and puts him on a Greyhound bus to California, where Solo will take Adam's reserved place at a rehabilitation center specializing in the treatment of PTSD.
Sometime later, Adam returns from his own stay at the rehabilitation center, being greeted by his wife and children back in their original home.
- Miles Teller as Staff Sergeant Adam Schumann, Saskia's husband, a soldier who leaves Iraq as a broken man.
- Haley Bennett as Saskia Schumann, Adam's loyal and supportive wife.
- Beulah Koale as Specialist Tausolo Aieti, Alea's husband, an American Samoan soldier who feels that the military has made his life better.
- Joe Cole as PFC Billy Waller, a soldier who returns home in crisis and tries to find his fiancée and their daughter, who have left him.
- Amy Schumer as Amanda Doster, Saskia's best friend and the wife of Sergeant First Class James Doster.
- Brad Beyer as Sergeant First Class James Doster, Amanda's husband.
- Keisha Castle-Hughes as Alea, Tausolo Aieti's wife
- Scott Haze as Michael Adam Emory, a soldier suffering from PTSD.
- Omar Dorsey as Dante, a veteran who now operates as a drug smuggler
- Jayson Warner Smith as VA Receptionist
- Sean P Mcgoldrick as Private Chris Kyle Jr.
- Erin Darke as Tracey
- David Morse as Fred Gusman
- Jake Weber as Colonel Plymouth
- Kate Lyn Sheil as Bell
On March 12, 2013, DreamWorks announced that it had acquired the film rights to David Finkel's then-upcoming non-fiction book Thank You for Your Service, about posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in soldiers who return from the war in Iraq and have difficulties in adapting to civilian life. Steven Spielberg was expected to direct the film, and, in June 2013, American Sniper's Oscar-nominated scribe Jason Dean Hall was hired to adapt the book into a film. Daniel Day-Lewis was later eyed to re-team with Spielberg on the film.
On June 30, 2015, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that screenwriter Hall would instead be making his directorial debut with the film from his own script. Jon Kilik produced the film, which Universal Pictures distributes in the United States.
On August 19, 2015, it was reported that Miles Teller was in talks to join the film as Adam Schumann, a soldier who leaves Iraq as a broken man. On October 20, 2015, Haley Bennett was cast to play Schumann's loyal and supportive wife. On December 2, 2015, New Zealand-based newcomer Beulah Koale was cast to play Solo, an American Samoan soldier who feels that the military has made his life better. On January 7, 2016, Scott Haze was added to play a soldier suffering from PTSD. On January 28, 2016, Joe Cole joined the film to play a soldier who returns home in crisis and tries to find his fiancée and their daughter who have left him, while Jayson Warner Smith joined the film to play a receptionist at a Veterans Affairs office. On February 9, 2016, Amy Schumer joined the cast with three others, Keisha Castle-Hughes, Brad Beyer, and Omar Dorsey. It was later revealed that Kate Lyn Sheil had also joined the cast.
In the United States and Canada, Thank You for Your Service was released alongside Jigsaw and Suburbicon, and was projected to gross around $5 million from 2,054 theaters in its opening weekend. It ended up debuting to $3.7 million, finishing 6th at the box office, and marking the second straight week Teller was featured in a well-received but underperforming biopic, following Only the Brave. In its second weekend it grossed $2.3 million, dropping 40%, and finishing 7th at the box office.
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On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 77% based on 100 reviews, with an average rating of 6.7/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Thank You for Your Service takes a sobering and powerfully acted – if necessarily incomplete – look at soldiers grappling with the horrific emotional impact of war." On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating to reviews, the film has a weighted average score of 68 out of 100, based on 34 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A–" on an A+ to F scale.
|“||...has been written, shot, edited and acted in such an intimate and unobtrusive way that the result feels like a throwback to an earlier era of American mainstream filmmaking, when it was still possible to base a handsomely produced feature film around observed behavior.||”|
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- Universal Pictures(Oct 20, 2017) "UNIVERSAL PICTURES AND AMC THEATRES® OFFER U.S. VETERANS AND ACTIVE-DUTY SERVICEMEMBERS UP TO 10,000 FREE TICKETS TO DREAMWORKS PICTURES' "THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE" PR Newswire.
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