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A Soldier's Story Critique
Sep 14, 2017 in Description
The action takes place during the year of 1944. The situation happens in one of the U.S. military bases. The main accident that makes a cause of the whole story is the fact that African-American sergeant was shot. The Washington governmental department entrusted the investigation to the black military lawyer-officer. As for the plot of the story, it is not unique but interesting because of the intriguing beginning of the action. This kind of plot development is usually used in numerous television series dedicated to all kinds of investigations. The main theme of the story is racial tolerance. In this case, it is harmonically balanced with the development of the investigation and arguments and discussion on the subject of morality.
The atmosphere of the whole action is surprisingly calm, slightly tensed and filled with humor, jokes and flashbacks. The whole development is interlaced with songs and soldiers' laughing, baseball competitions and drinking at a town pub.
The main character is Captain Davenport. This character does not mean a lot to the story flow. His image is intensified by the choice of the military form and the style that was characteristic of this officer. He wears military style glasses that make him look very influential and strong in the eyes of other officers.
The remarkable thing is that, at the end of the story, another captain who was a white officer that was disputing with Captain Davenport during the story was also wearing the same form and style glasses. This episode shows that all the barriers can be fought by people and no matter the skin color — people are equal. He held an investigation of the case and interviewed the soldiers that were under the policy of the sergeant that was killed.
The only interesting thing about this character is that he is the only officer who comes to the military base that has a black skin color. When he appears in the base, it becomes possible to see that all the officers and soldiers are shocked as they had never seen a black officer. Here is the phrase from the plot: "What are you staring at? You have never seen a black officer? - No, sir! And have you seen? - Uh, no." This explains a lot as there was discrimination of people because of their skin color, and this officer was out of all the rules.
The theme of racial discrimination goes as the leading point of the whole story. The problem is disclosed through the attitudes of white officers to the soldiers that were not the same skin color and reaction that was produced by Capitan Davenport. The killed sergeant appears in flashbacks when the soldiers recall the events that preceded the assassination.
The whole idea of the story is very interesting and revealing. The characters were chosen perfectly as they managed to render the proper atmosphere of constant hatred and moral fight of people for their rights. The most striking part of the development of the action was the investigation results that showed that the sergeant was killed by soldiers that were the same skin color with him. The sets' designs were chosen with the great thoroughness and attention to details.
The costumes demonstrated the epoch and era of military time. The sportswear that is characteristic and traditional for baseball play added more color to the whole story.
As for the acting, it was perfect, and all the characters were in a great dynamic harmony. One of the soldiers that stood out of the whole department was CJ who was very talented, and the rest of the soldiers considered him the best gamer and a very interesting person. White officers liked him too, and he was a clear soul that filled others with joy and happiness. CJ could find joy in every situation and sing a song to make everybody calm and listen with enjoyment.
The sergeant considered him not smart enough and caused a betrayal that led to the incarceration of CJ and later to his suicide. This is the central point of the whole story that explains a lot of questions and helps the onlooker to see the situation and understand it better. Everybody loved CJ and considered him a star that filled them all with life. The acting of all the actors is worth complimenting as the whole story is based on it. The success of the story is defined by the actors' play as they managed to render the atmosphere of the time. The costumes and the setting were thoroughly chosen along with the set of actors that managed to make the story alive on the stage.
In general, the film is very easy to understand and see the main aim of the author and director. The problem is fully discussed and what is the most important is that it was not overextended. It opens serious problems that were revealing in the society during the time of the Second World War.
This is a strong film that received wide acclaim. This is both a story about a mysterious murder and exciting psychological drama, and good character study. It opens one of the most painful problems of American society — the problem of racial discrimination.
The ending of the story suggests hope that U.S. Army will consist of white and black soldiers that will be participating in the war and fight together feeling each other's shoulder as a strong and trusted support. Two officers become on the same line and give hands as a symbol of a better future for people not depending on their skin color.