Friday, December 29, 2006

World Trade Center: The Movie

The second night after Christmas, my daughter and I put the children to bed early and watched a movie--World Trade Center. We cried, and we talked about it a lot the next day.

The tag line for the movie says it is “A true story of courage and survival.” Directed by Oliver Stone, it is the very moving and intense story of two of only twenty survivors rescued from the rubble of the World Trade Center buildings.

Will Jimeno, played by Michael Peña, was a rookie in a select group of New York City Port Authority policemen supervised by John McLoughlin (Nicholas Cage). Clad in fire gear, they were headed into the first-hit building in a brave effort to save as many as they could. They did not know the second building had also been hit. When the first building began to collapse, they were in the concourse between buildings. They ran for the elevator shafts and were buried there for about 22 hours before being rescued. The other members of the group were killed in the collapse.

The movie shows the courage of the two men and their families in the face of this terrifying experience. McLoughlin’s and Jimeno’s thoughts were of their families, each other, and their partners who had been killed. The CBS News site at this link tells the true story and features a video of a “Sixty Minutes” interview on November 24, 2004, with McLoughlin, Jimeno, and several of the men who rescued them.

An important part of the film is the heroic story of then-former-Marine Staff Sergeant David Karnes who was largely responsible for their rescue, along with another Marine known only as “Sgt. Thomas.” A senior accountant in Wilton, Connecticut, Karnes felt called by God to don his Marine uniform, gather up his military rescue equipment, and go to New York City to help. His fascinating story is told in this linked article in the Wilton, Connecticut, newspaper, the Wilton Bulletin of August 10, 2006.

His part in the 9-11 rescues was clearly a “God thing,” and Stone portrayed it that way. Too often, Hollywood tries to gloss over “God things” or downplay them, but in this movie, we see it the way it probably was, not embellished in any way, no implied excuses or criticism for his following this heart-felt urge.

Stone’s film does not try to tell the whole story of September 11, 2001. But through the story of these two men, their families, and their rescuers, what comes clear is the universal feelings of fear and shock, as well as the uncommon courage and human love on that terrible day.

The picture of the Port Authority policemen in the movie comes from this web site:

1 comment:

bola828 said...

Post a Comment