The best films and documentaries for commemorating Veterans Day

Mentor Veterans MemorialFirst and foremost, thank you to our veterans from all branches of the military.

We cannot not do what we do unless we are first safe, and you are the ones who have kept us safe.

Secondly, all of Mentor Library’s branches will be closed this Veteran’s Day. But, with our digital services, you still have access to all sorts of movies, books, audiobooks and music even when the library’s buildings are closed.

Also, IndieFlix and Hoopla have several films and documentaries that are appropriate reminders of what Veteran’s Day is all about. You can stream the videos to your computer, tablet or phone for free if you have a Mentor Library card.

From IndieFlix:

1) Hooligans at War (67 min) Ages 18+

A compelling documentary that follows the United States Hooligan Platoon inside their day-to-day lives fighting in war-torn Afghanistan.

2) Coming Home (14 min) Ages 13+

This moving personal documentary was made by Vietnam War veteran Herb Sennett. I learned that if I am not able to help the people in another land, I can sure help the people around me, Herb says. Coming Home features his recollections of that time, his impressions of Vietnam and its people, and the legacy it left on his life.

3) The Negro Soldier (43 min) Ages 13+

A documentary focusing on the contributions to the American war effort by African-American soldiers.

4) Who Will Stand (112 min) Ages 13+

This feature documentary takes a close look at what happens to 21st century veterans when they return home: the joy of reconnecting with loved ones, the pain of dealing with lingering wounds.

5) Finnigan’s War (54 min) Ages 13+

To commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Korean War, actor/filmmaker Conor Timmis sets out on a yearlong journey to honor his late grandfather and the heroes of America’s forgotten war.

6) A War to End All Wars (120 min) Ages 13+

Fascinating and unique tales from World War I, narrated by UK broadcaster Robin Thompson.

From Hoopla:

7) Where Soldiers Come From (91 min) Not Rated

This documentary follows three young men from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula as they receive their basic training and are sent to Afghanistan, patrolling roadways looking for improvised explosive devices. The film charts their evolving attitudes about the war and American foreign policy as they see how it works up close, as well as their sometimes tense relationships with their families, who aren’t certain the young men will ever come home.

8) A Perfect Soldier (56 min) Not Rated

An extraordinary and inspiring documentary about one man’s journey from child soldier to international hero. A Perfect Soldier tells the story of Aki Ra, who as a young boy was taken by the Khmer Rouge and forced to plant hundreds of landmines in the Cambodian countryside. As an adult, he has devoted his life to removing them, one landmine at a time. In 2010, he was named one of CNN’s Top 10 Heroes of the Year.

9) Ken Burns: The War (seven episodes, each 120 min) TV14

Ken Burns’ seven-part documentary series directed and produced by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, explores the history and horror of the Second World War from an American perspective by following the fortunes of so-called ordinary men and women who become caught up in one of the greatest cataclysms in human history. Six years in the making, this epic 14-hour film focuses on the stories of citizens from four geographically distributed American towns—Waterbury, Connecticut; Mobile, Alabama; Sacramento, California; and the tiny farming town of Luverne, Minnesota.

10) The Winning of World War II: The Road to Victory (16 episodes, each 60 min) Not Rated

Join General John Eisenhower as he retraces World War II. From the rise of Hitler to the historic battles and the eventual involvement of U.S. forces, witness the Allies’ road to victory. Then, discover the top commanders who made this victory possible.

11) Crusade in the Pacific (26 episodes, each 30 min) TVPG

Experience the epic television documentary event that chronicles all the bloody land, sea and air battles for the Pacific, produced by the legendary March Of Time newsreel unit and featuring never-before-seen footage from the archives of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines, as well as film captured from the Japanese government.

Here’s a link to all of Mentor Library’s digital services, all of which are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Also, if you’re not sure how to use them, we’ve created videos explaining how to access Hoopla and IndieFlix. Both services are free, as long as you have a Mentor Public Library card.

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