Hacksaw Ridge

2016, Biography/History, 2h 19m

280 Reviews 50,000+ Ratings

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critics consensus

Hacksaw Ridge uses a real-life pacifist's legacy to lay the groundwork for a gripping wartime tribute to faith, valor, and the courage of remaining true to one's convictions. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

The true story of Pfc. Desmond T. Doss (Andrew Garfield), who won the Congressional Medal of Honor despite refusing to bear arms during WWII on religious grounds. Doss was drafted and ostracized by fellow soldiers for his pacifist stance but went on to earn respect and adoration for his bravery, selflessness and compassion after he risked his life -- without firing a shot -- to save 75 men in the Battle of Okinawa.

Cast & Crew

Andrew Garfield
Desmond Doss
Sam Worthington
Captain Glover
Teresa Palmer
Dorothy Shutte
Hugo Weaving
William Thomas Doss
Vince Vaughn
Sergeant Howell
Richard Roxburgh
Colonel Stelzer
Luke Pegler
Milt "Hollywood" Zane
Richard Pyros
Randall "Teach" Fuller
Firass Dirani
Vito Rinnelli
Nico Cortez
Wal Kirzinski
Jacob Warner
James Pinnick
Ben O'Toole
Corporal Jessop
Benedict Hardie
Captain Daniels
Ori Pfeffer
Irv Schecter
Milo Gibson
Lucky Ford
Andrew Knight
Screenwriter
Michael Bassick
Executive Producer
David S. Greathouse
Executive Producer
Mark C. Manuel
Executive Producer
Ted O'Neal
Executive Producer
Buddy Patrick
Executive Producer
Suzanne Warren
Executive Producer
Christopher Woodrow
Executive Producer
Simon Duggan
Cinematographer
John Gilbert
Film Editor
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Critic Reviews for Hacksaw Ridge

Audience Reviews for Hacksaw Ridge

  • Sep 20, 2017
    Somewhat torn about this. The directing, look and acting is top-notch, no doubt about it. Especially the huge battle scenes are impressive, disgusting and engaging, almost rivaling Saving Private Ryan's. The beginning does take its time introducing our protagonist and his early life. His ultimate engagement is unbelievable and the definition of a hero. While you feel some parts may be a bit exaggerated, the actual quotes the movie ends with prove many details right. On the other side, the film is neither particularly subtle about Doss' belief nor in making monsters out of the enemy. The final taking of Hacksaw Ridge is portrayed rather questionably. Still, Doss' unimaginable heroism is a story worth telling.
    Jens S Super Reviewer
  • Jul 28, 2017
    Good story, though just a tad too Hollywoodized. Realistic fighting and fantastic war effects.
    Ed K Super Reviewer
  • Jul 18, 2017
    Charging forth with a pacifist war story that's anything but passive, director Mel Gibson channels the vicious punch and visceral panache of some vaulted war films from H'Wood's past in telling the story of one very Brave Heart who's Passion for the Christ found him sticking to his religious, er, guns during one of World War II's deadliest skirmishes. In this R-rated war movie, pacifist WWII American Army Medic Desmond T. Doss (Andrew Garfield) refuses to kill people during the Battle of Okinawa and becomes the first man in American history to receive the Medal of Honor without firing a shot. Sporting a hard R rating, the film unapologetically pains a very bloody picture. Ironically and unsurprisingly skewing more toward the War is Hell mantra (made famous as the memoir title of another unlikely WWII underdog hero, Audie Murphy) than, say, one that proselytizes Peace is Heaven, this film's title says everything about its tone: Hacksaw Ridge. The ironic part arises from the fact that it's a story about pacifist convictions. The unsurprising part stems from the fact that it comes courtesy of a man made iconic by ultra-violent actioner Lethal Weapon, an artist who (kinda, sorta) also made 'historic' filmic violence iconic with Braveheart. To this end, there's two reasons why it wasn't titled The Desmond Doss Story. Due to the extreme but strategic use of violence, he film proves both a thoughtful rumination on the duality of man that's as much a statement by Gibson as Doss. For better and worse, Gibson zeroes in on two flicks for inspiration: Full Metal Jacket and Saving Private Ryan (All Quiet on the Western Front doubtlessly is another but many will miss the connection given that, at 87 years old, that film as a cultural touchstone has timed out for anybody but film historians). The better? Hacksaw Ridge comes way closer than most to equaling the gut punch realism of these modern war classics, serving up a demoralizing boot camp segment that would make Jacket's R. Lee Emery's Drill Sgt. proud (Vince Vaughn, in a surprising but rewarding casting choice, believably doles out the vitriol) and setting the second half in an embattled Pacific warzone (amphibious landing, body count, jettisoned limbs, and all) that sometimes looks like Ryan Normandy Beach scenes picked up from the cutting room floor. The worse? The telltale stylistic beats 'borrowed' from these films can't be missed. Still, if Gibson hadn't already earned a place as a vaunted director with Braveheart and The Passion of the Christ, Hacksaw Ridge almost ensures him entry. The most expensive independent movie of all time (in his heyday, Gibson could get a Mother Theresa snuff film financed with one phone call but, post 2010 public meltdown amid a fickle film industry, he had to piece together financiers like a Shark Tank contestant) delivers a remarkable and well-shot true story. Sticking to your guns - even when sticking to your guns specifically involves sticking to no guns - becomes more than a religious argument. It sets fire to a contentious conversation about a public trying to peacefully go about their day despite mass shootings being an almost weekly occurrence. Destined for Direct-to-Video status after The Amazing Spider-Man series toppled into oblivion, Andrew Garfield gives a layered and nuanced performance. It's not enough that he believably embodies the belief system of Desmond Doss's pacifist, he also looks and acts every bit like the simple - though not simpleton - farmer. As he's proven with Apocalypto and every film he's directed involving armed conflict (and, saved for Man Without a Face, they all do), Gibson puts forth a contemplative message saying peace is better than war but, ultimately, violence as an ends-to-a-means is often unavoidable ...or so it seems. Perhaps, the title of Lethal Weapon was simply hailing the coming of a cinematic realist. To Sum it Up: Soldier of Good Fortune
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • May 15, 2017
    From Mel Gibson comes the World War II drama Hacksaw Ridge. Based on a true story the film follows conscientious objector Desmond Doss as he fights to be allowed to serve as an Army Medic and ends up playing a pivotal role in the Battle of Okinawa. Starring Andrew Garfield, Hugo Weaving, Sam Worthington, Teresa Palmer, and Vince Vaughn, the film has an impressive cast that delivers some strong performances. And as usual, Gibson does an incredible job at showing the gritty reality of war. The writing is also especially good; exploring such themes as adhering to one's religious convictions and the personal toll that violence takes. An extraordinarily compelling story about faith and heroism, Hacksaw Ridge is a powerful film.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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