'A Hero's Welcome'
(DVD / NR / 2019 / Mill Creek Entertainment)
Overview: 'A Hero's Welcome' is a three hour documentary trilogy honoring the extraordinary sacrifices of America's greatest heroes.
DVD Verdict: First up is 'Never Surrender,' a story of sacrifice, survival, heroism, and reconciliation.
Lt. Edwin P. Ramsey led an offensive in the Philippine jungle that made history as the last mounted horse cavalry charge in U.S. military history. Refusing to surrender, he joined the Filipino resistance and commanded 40,000 guerilla warriors.
Narrated by Josh Brolin, it is one of the most engaging and revealing true stories of Lt. Col. Edwin P. Ramsey that I've ever had the pleasure to watch.
Recounting the story of the man who in 1942 led the last cavalry charge in U.S. army history, and commanded more than 40,000 guerrilla troops against the Japanese, Brolin's vocal tone beings a warmth to the madness, the mayhem that allows the deed of this one man to truly shine through.
'Return to Tarawa' depicts a WWII veteran, Leon Cooper, as he returns to the Tarawa battle site after learning that many of his countrymen, who died in the battle, still lie where they fell sixty-six years later.
Narrated by Ed Harris, the true story of this World War II veteran returning to the site of a battle in which he took part sixty five years earlier is as heartwarming as it is heartbreaking.
For Cooper learns many disturbing things about that site especially the fact that the remains of several hundred Americans still lie neglected and forgotten on that island.
Also, there is live ammunition scattered everywhere on the densely populated island. Finally, huge piles of garbage lie on Red Beach, hallowed ground, where hundreds of Americans were killed and wounded by Japanese gunfire.
Finally we get 'Until They Are Home' which focuses on the search for the remains of U.S. Marines who were killed in the legendary South Pacific World War II Battle of Tarawa; where over 6,000 men were killed in 72 hours.
Narrated by Kelsey Grammer (I mean, come on now, who doesn't love his smooth, chocolatey vocal tone?) and co-directed by Matthew Hausle, and Steven Barber, produced by Matthew Hausle and Tamara Henry and executive produced by Tim Shelton, 'Until They Are Home' brings to light the extraordinary dedication of the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) team members, largely unsung heroes who, until now, have been unrecognized while working in the shadows.
These young men and women returned in 2010 to the site of one of the most horrific battles of World War II in order to bring home fallen military heroes.
Their efforts on the island of Tarawa have provided some closure after 69 years, recovering the remains of a few U.S. servicemen and flying those remains back to American soil.
JPAC has more than a dozen teams that travel the globe on recovery missions, and 'Until They Are Home' is the story of one of those missions. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.