Earlier this week Ike told me not to make plans for Saturday because we were going to see American Sniper. Admittedly not knowing anything about the story except for the ending, I told him I didn’t want to go. I don’t like “outside” movies, war related or not. He said it didn’t matter if I “wanted” to go because I NEEDED to go.
I’m the first to admit that I live in my own “bubble” and on any given day my biggest concern is whether or not I can get my hair to curl or if my phone battery is going to die. Being an Army brat and spending my childhood living in-on-around military bases, I know that my bubble would not be possible without the sacrifices that our soldiers make and like all Americans should be, I am grateful beyond words for those sacrifices.
But for me personally, this movie wasn’t about that.
As far as movies go, it was great. I was entertained the entire time and enjoyed how well it was directed and how good the acting was, but I just didn’t think it would leave the impact on me that it has. I wasn’t prepared for the subtle scenes depicting PTSD, like a solider not being able to hug his own daughter or not being able to stop himself from hurting the dog in front of his family.
It was those small things in the movie that have brought up so many of my own memories about growing up with a war vet, especially a few specific ones I haven’t thought about in a really, really long time.
We can debate all day long about what in the movie was fact and what was fiction, but there is NO debate on the fact that war related PTSD is very, very real not only for soldiers, but for their families as well.
The movie did an great job of showing things from a point of view that I’ve never seen before and I guess I really needed to see that.
And it sucks.
And it makes me sad.
Oh, and one last thing…Bradley Cooper with 40 extra pounds of muscle in Wranglers, cowboy boots and a dirty UT ball cap with a fuzzy face might be THE sexiest thing I’ve ever seen on a movie screen.