You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Home Front

Richard Hankin's expertly made "Home Front" is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject -- blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch -- Hankin's film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch's defense of the war to speak volumes.

Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak volumes. This rendering of judgment by being nonjudgmental may not move “Home Front” off the arthouse circuit prior to its eventual broadcast on Showtime, but it’s hard to imagine anyone protesting that the film is too partisan.

In their home in Blairsville, Pa., — a suburb of Pittsburgh, Feldbusch, his parents and friends desperately seek normality. In fact, the most disturbing and ultimately moving scenes in the film involve Jeremy’s father trying to re-introduce his son to things he’d done pre-war: bike riding, for instance, or — as incredible as it may seem — deer hunting. Jeremy’s use of a 44 magnum handgun with a laser sight is alarming enough, but when he loses his temper, it’s near terrifying.

Much of the film concerns Feldbusch’s work with the Wounded Warrior Project, a New York-based support group for damaged Iraqi war vets, run by fellow vet John Melia, who is an understanding and savvy presence. His reasoned viewpoints give the film proper ballast. Whether the wounded men he deals with sacrificed themselves for a worthy cause, he says, is something they are “going to have to answer for themselves.”

While “Home Front’s” subject may not be unique — indeed, films about the war in Iraq have become ubiquitous — it shows empathy, sensitivity and dignity toward its subject. And Feldbusch never waivers: Terrorism, he says, is the foe; the war is justified. Whether audiences cheer or groan depends on their point of view.

Home Front

Production: A Showtime presentation of a Looking Glass Films production in association with Swirl Prods. Produced by Richard Hankin, Meredith Lavitt Williams. Directed, edited by Richard Hankin.

Crew: Camera (color, DV-to-HD), Scott Anger; music, Max Avery Lichtenstein. Reviewed on DVD, Los Angeles, April 29, 2006. (In Tribeca Film Festival.) Running time: 93 MIN. With Jeremy Feldbusch, Charlene Feldbusch, Brace Feldbusch, Ryan Kelly, Heath Calhoun, John Melia.

More Film

  • Universal Launches Direct Distribution in Hong

    Universal Starts Direct Distribution in Hong Kong, Appoints Anita Cheung

    Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak […]

  • Kobe Bryant Barred From Film Academy

    Oscar Winner Kobe Bryant Barred Entry Into Film Academy

    Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak […]

  • Producer Jennifer Todd Beats Jason Blum

    Producer Jennifer Todd Beats Out Jason Blum in Academy Governors Runoff Election

    Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak […]

  • Mel Gibson

    Mel Gibson Loses Bid to Block Release of 'Professor and the Madman'

    Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak […]

  • Mary J. Blige

    Mary J. Blige to Star in Horror-Thriller 'Body Cam' for Paramount

    Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak […]

  • Movie Theater

    The MoviePass Effect Is Here to Stay -- Even if MoviePass Isn't

    Richard Hankin’s expertly made “Home Front” is a tenderhearted documentary study of a returning Iraq war vet. By taking pains to be objective toward his subject — blinded, brain-damaged Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch — Hankin’s film allows the tragedy of the young soldier to speak for itself, and Feldbusch’s defense of the war to speak […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content