Your Help Needed! Which Movie Should I Show???

I have a movie decision to make so I thought I’d ask my readers. At the library where I work, I’m planning several events leading up to Veterans Day (November 11) culminating in a Veterans Day movie. We can choose most movies from Movie Licensing USA and there are several good ones in that database. (Unfortunately my top choice, The Best Years of Our Lives, is not on that list.)

I’ve narrowed my choices down to two: Battleground (1949) and They Were Expendable (1945). I like them both, I think they would both be good films to show to honor our veterans, but I’m really having trouble deciding which one to screen. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

battleground

Battleground (1949)

Pros:

Engaging, very much a forerunner of Band of Brothers

Just under two hours

Great cast

Available on Blu-ray

Might appeal to a broader population of veterans than They Were Expendable

Cons:

Feels a bit more dated than They Were Expendable, less actual “action” scenes

Biggest actor attraction: Van Johnson (nothing wrong with Johnson, but he’s going up against John Wayne in They Were Expendable)

They_Were

They Were Expendable (1945)

Pros: 

John Wayne, John Ford – both big draws

Another Great cast (including Robert Montgomery who actually was a PT boat commander during World War II)

Engaging story, more action scenes than Battleground

We are very close to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis and this movie might be of more interest to the locals than Battleground.

Available on Blu-ray

Cons:

Downer ending

Many (non-veterans) still unaware of the role of PT boats in WWII (which might provide a good opportunity to show people their importance)

Over two hours (2:14)

Both are excellent films. I think our community would enjoy both films. It’s possible I could do one this year and the other next year.

So let me know your thoughts! Thanks in advance.

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