A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The film focuses on what it means for soldiers to make the ultimate sacrifice. Many characters, whether they agree with the war in Iraq or not, show support for the soldiers.
Positive Role Models
Strobl is deeply moved by the process of escorting a soldier's body home for burial, though he questions his own decision to take a desk job instead of requesting a combat assignment.
Violence & Scariness
No violence, though there are some detailed conversations about the horrors of combat. Several scenes show mortuary workers preparing a soldier's body for burial; though they mention that the corpse is quite damaged, the subtle shots do not include any explicit images, and focus instead on small, telling details, such as cleaning blood off a watch.
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Very minor. "S--t" is used in conversation twice.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters drink during a memorial party. At first they are exuberant; later, they seem melancholy.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this somber film traces the journey of Private Chance Phelps, from his death in battle in Iraq, to a military mortuary in the United States, and finally to his hometown where he is buried. It also follows Lt. Col. Mike Strobl, who volunteers to escort Chance's coffin on the final stages of the trip, and along the way comes to grips with his own conflicted feelings about his duty as a Marine. The spare, emotional drama keeps politics in the background, and focuses instead on the soldiers serving, and dying, in Iraq. Whether or not people believe this conflict makes sense, the film makes it clear that anyone who gives their life in battle deserves honor and respect. Though there is very little violence, sex, swearing, drinking, or anything else that might alarm parents, the complex and poignant themes are probably better for a mature audience. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Though the presence of death looms heavy in TAKING CHANCE, this quiet and thoughtful film focuses not on combat but on the aftermath. It shines a light on a rarely-seem part of military culture: how the living honor the fallen. Civilians may be surprised by the magnitude of the military's funeral apparatus, including a team of morticians trained to reverently prepare bodies mangled by warfare, and the escorts who safeguard the coffins on their final journeys and respectfully stand at attention as their charges pass by at every transit point.
Taking Chance shows how this duty affects not only Strobl, but also the ordinary citizens he meets on the journey. Some of these civilians are not shy about voicing their opposition to the war in Iraq, but without exception they show nothing but support for Phelps and his fallen brethren. Despite the polarizing politics that surround the conflict, the emotional film makes clear that the soldiers on the ground deserve admiration and respect for taking on a dangerous and often deadly mission.
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Our Editors Recommend
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