Taglines: When the order came to retreat, one man stayed.
Hacksaw Ridge is the extraordinary true story of Desmond Doss [Andrew Garfield] who, in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle of WWII, saved 75 men without firing or carrying a gun. He was the only American soldier in WWII to fight on the front lines without a weapon, as he believed that while the war was justified, killing was nevertheless wrong.
As an army medic, he single-handedly evacuated the wounded from behind enemy lines, braved fire while tending to soldiers and was wounded by a grenade and hit by snipers. Doss was the first conscientious objector awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.
The film is based on the true story of US Army medic Desmond T. Doss. Doss was a Seventh-day Adventist conscientious objector who refused to bear arms, yet was awarded the Medal of Honor by President Harry S. Truman for single-handedly saving the lives of over 75 of his comrades while under constant enemy fire during the Battle of Okinawa in World War II.
Hacksaw Ridge is an Australian-American biographical war film directed by Mel Gibson and written by Andrew Knight and Robert Schenkkan. The film stars Andrew Garfield, Vince Vaughn, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Hugo Weaving, Ryan Corr, Teresa Palmer, Richard Pyros and Rachel Griffiths. Principal photography began on September 29, 2015 in various locations around New South Wales including Sydney Olympic Park and lasted for 105 days ending in December 2015.
Mel Gibson: Director’s Statement
When I heard the story of Desmond Doss, the first conscientious objector in the U.S. to receive the Medal of Honor, I was astounded by the extent of his sacrifice. Here was a man who, in the most pure, selfless, and almost unconscious way, repeatedly risked his own life to save the lives of his brothers. Desmond was a completely ordinary man who did extraordinary things.
When WWII broke out and young men raced to enlist, Desmond faced a predicament – he was as eager to serve as any man, but violence conflicted with his religious and moral beliefs. He refused to even touch a weapon. Desmond underwent intense persecution for his refusal to waver in his conviction, then went on to enter the hell of war armed with nothing more than his faith, and emerge one of the greatest war heroes of all time.
Desmond Doss was singular. There are few, if any people, who could or would replicate his actions. The humility he maintained in discussing his heroics is a testament to the mettle of the man. In fact, Desmond was asked permission for years to adapt his story into a film, and repeatedly declined, insisting that the “real heroes” were the ones in the ground. In a cinematic landscape overrun with fictional “superheroes,” I thought it was time to celebrate a real one.
Andrew Garfield truly inhabited the character and captured the essence of Desmond Doss, and the supporting cast and crew delivered in spades. I’m grateful for everyone’s contributions. It was a privilege and an honor to tell this story.
Directed by: Mel Gibson
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths, Vince Vaughn, Nathaniel Buzolic
Screenplay by: Andrew Knight, Robert Schenkkan
Production Design by: Barry Robison
Cinematography by: Simon Duggan
Film Editing by: John Gilbert
Costume Design by: Lizzy Gardiner
Art Direction by: Mark Robins
Music by: Rupert Gregson-Williams
MPAA Rating: R for intense prolonged realistically graphic sequences of war violence including grisly bloody images.
Studio: Lionsgate Films, Summit Entertainment
Release Date: November 4, 2016