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In the Valley of Elah

A movie directed by Paul Haggis

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Tommy Lee Jones jumps head first into, The Valley of Elah........

  • Jan 1, 2010
  • by
Rating:
+4
Unlike most films of this genre Paul Haggis' "In The Valley of Elah"  takes you farther and deeper into the torn lives of soldiers and the families and the toll of war takes on  them. It's a masterful and powerful film that is part neo-noir, part social drama.  The  mix of the two  collide to create a film experience that you will not forget.




"In The Valley of Elah" is not at first glance  a great movie  but after you finally break down and see it  you will be sucked into a world of corruption,  murder, deception  and mystery. It's one of the best films of the decade  and one of the most  well made films of the modern era,  it will enthrall  you   and enchant you. It's the kind of movie that  the minute it's over you want to see it again, it's just that good.



Tommy Lee Jones owns the screen  as the  take no  bull father looking for his  AWOL son. Jones  is so powerful and so convincing in the role  that he completely  and firmly convinces you that he's  a gravel pusher. His performance is key to this film as it is  almost entirely centered around  him  so Jones has  to give it all he's got  so the film can stand on two feet, he's the glue that holds everything together  and he is the one that  helps propel this film to greatness. Charlize Theron is the other big name player in this film, Theron is great but not as great as Jones but she puts everything she's got into the role she plays and is a worthy  second to Jones.




"In The Valley  of Elah" is engrossing, smart, stylish, powerful and at sometimes dark. It's a can't miss film with a can't miss performance from one of the best actors of this generation, Tommy Lee Jones. This film delivers what it promises and more. It's a film that must be seen to be truly believed.
Tommy Lee Jones jumps head first into, The Valley of Elah........

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More In the Valley of Elah reviews
review by . May 17, 2009
Hank Deerfield, played by Tommy Lee Jones, is the quintissential military officer who lives his personal life as he did while in the Army. Tommy's two sons, following in their father's footsteps, enter the military and are subsequently involved in the war in Iraq. The oldest is killed and the youngest, Mike, disappears once released. The Army has tagged him AWOL, but Deerfield doesn't believe this and goes searching for his son. When Mike's dismembered, burned corpse is found, the Army is all too …
review by . July 01, 2009
DVD
When young soldier Mike Deerfield returns from Iraq and immediately goes missing, his father, Hank (Tommy Lee Jones) tries to find him. Soon it appears that Mike was the victim of foul play, but Hank finds the military authorities strangely uncooperative and his only hope is a civilian police officer (Charlize Theron) who is disliked by her colleagues.       Though the film deals with war and murder, it is surprisingly unemotional and uninvolving. There is no tension or danger, …
review by . May 17, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
Hank Deerfield, played by Tommy Lee Jones, is the quintissential military officer who lives his personal life as he did while in the Army. Tommy's two sons, following in their father's footsteps, enter the military and are subsequently involved in the war in Iraq. The oldest is killed and the youngest, Mike, disappears once released. The Army has tagged him AWOL, but Deerfield doesn't believe this and goes searching for his son. When Mike's dismembered, burned corpse is found, the Army is all too …
review by . February 27, 2009
Pros: beautiful work by Tommie Lee Jones     Cons: none for me     The Bottom Line:   "This is the sound of those murderous drums  The marching of footsteps  The twisting of thumbs  Over and over  Again here it comes    We're lost"    ~Annie Lennox       In the Valley of Elah was directed by Paul Haggis with writing credits to Haggis and …
review by . November 06, 2008
In the Valley of Elah
  It is all written on the faces, the harried father who desperately seeks the whereabouts of his son after a tour in Iraq, the others who served with the young man, their proud military bearing and soft-spoken reverence for authority belied by what they have seen and done in service to their country. In this powerful, haunting tale, the rigors of war fall upon the survivors. Hank Deerfield (Tommy Lee Jones), ex-career military, leaves his home in Tennessee, wife (Susan Sarandon) waiting anxiously …
review by . November 15, 2008
Short Attention Span Summary (SASS):   1. War is hell   2. Coming back home can be worse       Tommy Lee Jones is perfectly cast as Hank Deerfield, a retired sergeant in the Military Police whose son Mike has gone missing shortly after returning home from active duty in Iraq.     Refusing to believe that Mike would go AWOL, Hank gets into his truck and heads off for the Army base to find out what really happened. He runs into …
review by . July 30, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
Pros: Acting, acting, story, acting, pacing, suspense      Cons: A few very heavy handed metaphors that stop me from adding the last star      The Bottom Line: Elah is not as subtle as Haggis's Crash, but the intense emotion make it worth every minute even if a couple of metaphors are weak.      Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie''s plot. Paul Haggis (director, writer, and one of the producers) …
review by . May 23, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
Ex MP Hank Deerfield (Tommy Lee Jones in one of his best roles) once had two sons. The first one got killed in a war, the second one has gone missing after he returned from Iraq.   Without thinking twice or discussing things with his wife (Susan Sarandon) Hank goes looking for him.   But he is not prepared for the dirty truths that come to light. It doesn't take him long to realize that the young man he is looking for has changed. With the help of a few blurry shots and videos …
review by . February 21, 2008
As this country continues to struggle with the tragedies inflicted upon all who are being singed and scorched by the Iraq War (and that includes every citizen of this country, whether directly or indirectly), films addressing this war are wither avoided by the theatrical audiences or cause flare reactions of judgment. Into this milieu writer (with Mark Boal) and director Paul Haggis places this painful examination of the effects and aftershocks of war in the persona of a father whose only son is …
review by . February 20, 2008
`In the Valley of Elah' is an absorbing police procedural about an Iraq War recruit, Mike Deerfield, who is reported AWOL a short time since returning home to his US base. Directed and written by Paul Haggis (`Crash'), the film is based on events as compiled by `Playboy' magazine writer, Mark Boals.    Tommy Lee Jones stars in a well-deserved Oscar nominated role as Mike's father, Hank Deerfield, a Vietnam veteran and the head of a military family whose two sons have enlisted …
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C.R. Lopez ()
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Member Since: Nov 6, 2009
Last Login: Jul 7, 2012 09:53 PM UTC
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Wiki

In career Army officer Hank Deerfield's worldview, the American military exists to bring order to the world, and honor and dignity to every one of its soldiers. As played by Tommy Lee Jones, in a layered performance that will haunt the viewer long after the film is over, Deerfield wears the Army life like he does his standard-issue white T-shirts--unconsciously making a cheap motel bed with crisp inspection-ready corners. Yet if war is hell, the purgatory for the relatives of damaged soldiers can cause far more anguish, and Paul Haggis' quietly devastatingIn the Valley of Elahtells this story through Deerfield, who is desperately trying to piece together the fate of his adored son Mike, a soldier in Iraq.

Mike's company has returned from duty, but he is missing; Hank flies from Tennessee to Fort Rudd in the Southwest, to conduct his own investigation into the disappearance. There he meets a smart but put-upon police officer (Charlize Theron, glammed-down but still showing a bit too much sexy collarbone for a cop) who also smells something off in the Army's official story of the disappearance. The two form an unlikely team, but as a friend tells Deerfield early on, "You gotta trust somebody sometime, Hank," and Mike's vanishing is Hank's tipping point.

As Hank pieces together the horrifying story of Mike's fate, the incremental pain becomes etched in Jones' ragged features, and the camera captures all of it--far more powerfully than ...

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Details

Director: Paul Haggis
Genre: Drama
Release Date: September 14, 2007
MPAA Rating: R
DVD Release Date: February 19, 2008
Runtime: 121 minutes
Studio: Warner Home Video
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