I've seen many films on the Iraq war. As an American, I feel obliged to get every perspective and listen to all points of view, after all, my fellow countrymen are over there risking their lives. (see list below). Often they're difficult to watch, difficult to reckon, but certainly enlightening, broadening, important. That's one reason I wanted to see "The Way We Get By." It's one perspective on the Iraq War I hadn't seen, and one that's easy to watch, heartening, even inspiring. The perfect complement to every list of war films.
This documentary follows seniors Jerry, Joan and Bill. Both Jerry and Bill are veterans, each with their own take on the Iraq War decision. Joan has her thoughts on that too. But these opinions take a backseat to the real story of the film. Jerry, Joan and Bill are Troop Greeters in Bangor Maine. Late night phone calls wake them nearly every night to get dressed, go out in the cold and greet a plane load of troops returning from Iraq. It's a beautiful thing. The troops are appreciative and often moved. And like most acts of giving, Bill, Joan, and Jerry find themselves on the receiving end as well. They're lives are enriched. In fact, they all seem to admit to the addiction.
Troop Greeting is the focus and common thread, but interviews continue out of the airport as well. We learn a bit about life from the perspective of the elderly. The health challenges, the loneliness, the wisdom that comes in the Autumn of one's life. A beautiful, affecting documentary with an appropriately sweet original sound track.
Director's Statement: "My mother, Joan Gaudet, is a troop greeterů Witnessing firsthand how her life changed in such positive ways, while at the same time touching the lives of troops from all over the country, convinced me this was a story that could inspire people." Aron Gaudet
Fahrenheit 9 11
Another Way Home
Body of War
(For a fictional perspective)
-- Books by Author/Illustrator Ross Anthony --