Back to The Best Movies for Veteran's Day
'Gods and Monsters'
This movie about the life of 'Frankenstein' director James Whale is largely fictionalized, but it rings true in its depiction of a World War I veteran still haunted by combat memories 40 years later. Whale (in a towering performance by Ian McKellen) is unique among veterans in movies in two respects: he's an artist who's wartime memories inspired some of the horrors depicted in his art, and he's an openly gay man whose lover was a casualty in the trenches. Like Billy Pilgrim in 'Slaughterhouse-Five,' Whale has come unstuck in time and finds his vivid but terrifying past mingling with his bland present, but he's tragically far less able to cope with his post-traumatic stress.