Movies Like The Ground Truth

Opening

97% Ghostbusters Aug 29
28% As Above/So Below Aug 29
36% The November Man Aug 27
98% Starred Up Aug 27
76% The Congress Aug 29

Top Box Office

92% Guardians of the Galaxy $17.2M
20% Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles $16.7M
37% If I Stay $15.7M
21% Let's Be Cops $10.8M
18% When The Game Stands Tall $8.4M
34% The Expendables 3 $6.5M
32% The Giver $6.4M
45% Sin City: A Dame to Kill For $6.3M
66% The Hundred-Foot Journey $5.3M
19% Into The Storm $3.8M

Coming Soon

—— Innocence Sep 05
—— The Longest Week Sep 05
—— The Identical Sep 05
67% Thunder and the House of Magic Sep 05
74% God Help the Girl Sep 05

New Episodes Tonight

—— Jonah From Tonga: Season 1

Discuss Last Night's Shows

75% The Cosmopolitans: Season One
100% Defiance: Season 2
100% Garfunkel and Oates: Season 1
89% The Honorable Woman: Season 1
56% Married: Season 1
39% Rush: Season 1
82% Satisfaction: Season 1
82% Welcome to Sweden: Season 1
77% You're the Worst: Season 1

Certified Fresh TV

86% The Bridge (FX): Season 2
91% Doctor Who: Season 8
83% Extant: Season 1
89% The Honorable Woman: Season 1
87% The Knick: Season 1
89% Manhattan: Season 1
97% Masters of Sex: Season 2
73% Murder in the First: Season 1
89% Outlander: Season 1
82% Satisfaction: Season 1
87% The Strain: Season 1
82% Welcome to Sweden: Season 1
77% You're the Worst: Season 1

The Ground Truth Reviews

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Harlequin68
Harlequin68

Super Reviewer

June 15, 2007
[font=Century Gothic]The illuminating documentary, "The Ground Truth", reminded me of what a ROTC cadet told me during the First Gulf War - that if you enlist in the armed forces, you may be called on to kill at some point. Let's have no illusions. It is true but only up to a point. A good deal of the veterans returning from Iraq who are interviewed for this documentary(Basically, not the kinds of people that are heard from everyday. Thankfully, no pundits are included. Just a couple of experts.) are National Guard and were not expecting to be stationed there, least of all to be placed in a position to kill civilians. Did the masterminds of this catastrophe have any idea what they were sending these brave soldiers into? Some of whom return missing limbs; others are suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder(PTSD) because of their experiences and for which they do not receive adequate treatment.[/font]
Sunil J

Super Reviewer

April 3, 2008
Rough to watch but heartfelt and honest.
March 22, 2007
Amazing documentary which reveals a lot of information which is usually hidden by the government and army. Pretty shocking and messed up as some points, its definitely a good insight and is worth watching!
January 29, 2007
iIF YOU EVER CONSIDER ENLISTING OR THINK THE WAR ON TERROR IS BEING WON, I WOULD BUY THIS FOR YOU. WAR=TERROR. PERIOD.
October 16, 2006
Only 1 hr & 18 min long. Felt like it just skimmed the top without really delving deep into any issue. Poignant, yet could have been so much more.
September 14, 2012
Sara was in my unit, center photo on the cover. Sara is one of the biggest cowards I have met. He attempted to reenlist after our Iraq deployment, but was denied because of his cowardice acts while deployed. And then he started bashing the Marine Corps. He talks about how bad it was, but he actually did nothing while he was deployed to Iraq.
March 1, 2012
This is a really disturbing story from the veterans of the Iraq war.
waggaga1
November 10, 2011
Interesting, but not engrossing.
July 16, 2011
This film was obviously made by a Liberal person...only showed one side of the war....Very anti-war.....Did not like it...Although I still have it in my heart to help veterans any way I can!
April 30, 2011
BUSH - you are really worse than Stalin and Hitler together.
Harlequin68
Harlequin68

Super Reviewer

June 15, 2007
[font=Century Gothic]The illuminating documentary, "The Ground Truth", reminded me of what a ROTC cadet told me during the First Gulf War - that if you enlist in the armed forces, you may be called on to kill at some point. Let's have no illusions. It is true but only up to a point. A good deal of the veterans returning from Iraq who are interviewed for this documentary(Basically, not the kinds of people that are heard from everyday. Thankfully, no pundits are included. Just a couple of experts.) are National Guard and were not expecting to be stationed there, least of all to be placed in a position to kill civilians. Did the masterminds of this catastrophe have any idea what they were sending these brave soldiers into? Some of whom return missing limbs; others are suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder(PTSD) because of their experiences and for which they do not receive adequate treatment.[/font]
vh
September 22, 2006
I'm always up for a good anti-war documentary so I ran right out to see [i]The Ground Truth[/i], which features a dozen or so soldiers who've recently returned from stints in Iraq and are none too happy about their experiences.

Their complaints fall into four main areas. First of all, the recruiters lied to them. Told them they would never get sent overseas. Pretended they'd be trained for the fancy career of their dreams. Raved about the excellent benefits. And never bothered to mention that their real job would be to kill people.

Secondly, basic training brainwashes recruits. It attempts to turn them all into cold-blooded killers. They're made to shout "Kill babies!" during drills. They sing cadences about rounding up school kids and gunning them down on the playground. Ditto for women at the shopping mall. They claim that this bothers them at first but that after a while the words lose their meaning.

Thirdly, the war itself sucks. No one knows what their mission is and many think it's related to September 11th. They're taught to view Iraqi citizens as the enemy and to treat them with contempt. They call them "rag-heads" or "hajjis". They're ordered to fire into crowds of civilians indiscriminately in an attempt to take down even a single shooter.

Finally, they're having major troubles adjusting to life back home and complain that the government is doing little to assist them. They're racked with guilt about things they did in Iraq. One guy shot an innocent woman at a checkpoint as she was reaching into her bag for a white flag. Another was a passenger in a vehicle that slowed to let a child cross and then intentionally ran him over. Running over errant pedestrians was the official policy, he claims.

Many of the featured soldiers suffer from some sort of physical and/or mental problems. One guy is missing an arm and one girl is missing a leg and one guy's face is burned so badly that he's left with almost no nose -- just a pair of nostrils. We hear from one set of parents whose son returned to a hero's welcome. Shortly thereafter he hung himself with a garden hose. We're told that the Veterans Bureau discourages claims of post-traumatic stress disorder; they try to classify all psychological problems as personality disorders.

Surely not every returning soldier is as disgruntled as those in this bunch. If you join the National Guard for tuition assistance and end up getting your leg blown off, of course you're likely to be bitter. But what conclusions can be drawn about the general morale of our armed forces when the filmmakers apparently handpicked only men and women who felt they were lied to, ordered to behave immorally in Iraq, and then cast aside upon their return? Surely there must be some soldiers out there who feel that their mission was honorable and that the Army treated them well. And others who had no illusions that going to war would do anything but suck in the first place.

Though I'm sure the issues of sleazy recruiters and the difficulties in adjusting to civilian life are real, tales of our government's lying and screwing people over hardly surprise me. I'm far more alarmed by the returning soldiers' reports of the general disregard for the lives of Iraqi civilians that they've witnessed, and of policies which seem to make little attempt to limit civilian casualties. Just how typical are the experiences of these soldiers? And how widespread is the disdain that they claim that their leaders felt for the people they're supposed to be "liberating"? What's the military's response to these claims?

Unfortunately, you won't find answers to these questions in this film. Even though I'm a long-standing member of the anti-war choir to which this movie is preaching, I still think it'd be a far better film if it wasn't so completely one-sided. When will documentary filmmakers learn? Contrary to what the success of Michael Moore may seem to indicate, fair-minded people really do want to hear BOTH sides of a story. At least this one does.
fyodor_fish
September 11, 2006
As the occupation of Iraq by the United States military continues without a definite endpoint, the obvious, unasked question (at least by the mainstream media) is, "What about the returning soldiers who served in Iraq?" Filmmaker Patricia Foulkrod attempts to answer that and related questions in [i]The Ground Truth[/i], in three-and-a-half years, almost 2,700 soldiers have lost their lives in Iraq. More than 16,000 soldiers have been injured, some seriously (and permanently), leaving them incapable of returning fully to civilian life. All of them, whether they've suffered physical injuries or not, have to deal with readjusting to civilian life. Serving in Iraq (some for as long as a year) has left some returning soldiers with deep psychological and emotional wounds (e.g., post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD).

[i]The Ground Truth[/i] doesn?t make any claims to being anything but a straightforward, traditional documentary. Foulkrod uses a mix of "talking head" interviews with Iraqi war veterans, family members, professionals involved in the care and treatment of veterans, video footage taken from Iraqi combat zones (some of it graphic), and video stills or photographs to construct a powerful, poignant plea to treat returning soldiers with the resources necessary to ensure their mental, emotional, and physical well-being. Not surprisingly, [I]The Ground Truth[/I] goes further, allowing the veterans to express their doubts, if not for serving their country (for whatever reason, economic or ideological), then for the poorly defined mission in Iraq.

One veteran, Robert Acosta, a specialist in the U.S. Army, expresses his now-discarded belief he shared with other soldiers that Iraq was integral to the global war on terrorism and a necessary response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Instead, Acosta and other veterans found themselves fighting both insurgents and civilians, without the ability to differentiate between the two groups. That alone brings up a key parallel to Vietnam War, which another interviewee brings up later in [i]The Ground Truth[/i]: insurgent-led asymmetrical warfare (e.g., guerilla warfare by another name) has a profoundly negative impact on the soldiers forced to make life-or-death decisions on incomplete, often incorrect, information. Without clearly defined enemies to fight, innocent civilians can and will be killed. Some soldiers can live with the inevitability of making a wrong decision.

Other Iraqi war veterans, like Jimmy Massey, a former sergeant in the Marine Corps. and recruiter turned anti-war activist, couldn't. When he sought psychological counseling through the Veterans Administration (VA), his claim was rebuffed (the therapist categorized him as a ?conscientious objector? for refusing to fire on civilians). Unlike Massey, however, another returning war veteran, Jeff Lucey, committed suicide months after his return to the United States, convinced that he was a murderer. Others, like Chad Reiber, a decorated U.S. Army Ranger who served in both Afghanistan and Iraq, found himself facing felony charges after assaulting another man at a party. Luckily, Reiber?s service record helped him avoid jail time. Another veteran, Herold Noel, found himself homeless and persistently haunted by nightmares of Iraq. Unfortunately, the VA refused to help him, due to a misdiagnosis of his condition.

If [i]The Ground Truth[/i] has any weaknesses, they can be found in the brief running time and in Foulkrod's apparent unwillingness to explore different, potentially contradictory points of view. As it is, Foulkrod includes one psychologist to describe the general parameters of PTSD as suffered by Iraqi war veterans and, earlier on, author David Grossman to describe the dehumanizing effects of basic training. The evidence of neglect Foulkrod amasses against the VA and the current administration is anecdotal at best. Foulkrod could have strengthened her case by including interviews with representatives from the VA (especially considering claims that the VA has actively under-diagnosed PTSD), Republican and Democratic legislators (on the armor issue several veterans bring up), or other experts. Last, Foulkrod?s decision to wait until the end of the documentary disclose the anti-war associations of several veterans leaves [I]The Ground Truth[/I] open to claims of liberal bias.

Still, the Iraqi war veterans make compelling, perhaps irrefutable, claims about the psychological damage they've experienced as a result of serving in Iraq. From the descriptions of their experiences in Iraq, primarily the killing of civilians, these men and women are and will continue to be haunted by their actions in Iraq. As one expert steps in to remind us, the psychological impact extends from the veterans to their families, friends, and anyone else who comes into contact with them. They may no longer wear military uniforms, but they aren't civilians either. One soldier describes re-assimilation into civilian life as "ghosting" while several express disappointment that civilians will never understand their experiences and how they've changed them. Unfortunately, it?s one lesson (among many) that every wartime generation has to learn for itself.
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