On October 4, Movie Buzzers attended a special screening of the documentary Thank You For Your Service aboard the U.S.S. Intrepid in Manhattan. The film is a tragic investigation into the failing mental health policies within the U.S. military and focuses on how woefully unprepared the military has been in addressing these issues over the past several decades, but particularly since the beginning of the War on Terror. It’s a sobering statistic: 20 U.S. military veterans commit suicide every single day. Thousands more who served are suffering from what is commonly labeled as PTSD, but there are many forms of war trauma that don’t fit under that umbrella term. Despite the public and politicians often declaring that they support our troops, many veterans are not receiving the mental health treatment support that they desperately need when they return from the battlefield.
However, Thank You For Your Service does not just point fingers at the problems. Director Tom Donahue and his team follow four veterans whose personal lives were severely affected by war trauma as they tried to transition bacl to civilian life and observes the methods they undertake to find healing. It turns a documentary that would otherwise be infuriating into a message of hope — that these problems can be confronted. Numerous mental health experts, retired military officials, and politicians contribute to the film and explain not just why these problems exist, but how politicians and the military can work together to save the lives of returning veterans to truly thank them for their service.
Thank You For Your Service opens in theaters on October 7 in Los Angeles and October 28 in New York. Beginning October 17, there will also be a nationwide Theatrical On Demand release of one night only event screenings via Gathr. If you are interested in attending one of these screenings — or if you’re interested in organizing one in your community — visit ThankYouForYourServiceTheFilm.com