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In the Valley of Elah (2007)

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Crime, Drama, Mystery |

In the Valley of Elah is a American crime drama mystery film written and directed by Paul Haggis, starring Tommy Lee Jones, Charlize Theron, and Susan Sarandon. The film’s title refers to the Biblical valley where the battle between David and Goliath took place.

Paul Haggis’s In The Valley of Elah is based on actual events, although the characters’ names and locations have been changed. The screenplay was inspired by journalist Mark Boal’s “Death and Dishonor”, an article about the murder case published in Playboy magazine in 2004.

The film tells the story of military police veteran Hank Deerfield (Tommy Lee Jones), his wife Joan (Susan Sarandon) and their search for their son Mike (Jonathan Tucker). A soldier recently returned from Iraq, Mike has suddenly gone missing. Deerfield’s investigation is aided by a police detective (Charlize Theron), who becomes personally involved in the case.

Mike’s dismembered and burned body is eventually found. Military officials initially attempt to block the police investigation; they suggest Mike’s death was due to drug-related violence. His platoonmates who last saw him lie to Deerfield and the police. Deerfield tells the police that although he suspects the soldiers are lying about something, he believes they could not have killed their comrade.

Director: Paul Haggis

Writers: Paul Haggis (screenplay & story), Mark Boal (story)

Stars: Tommy Lee Jones, Charlize Theron, Jonathan Tucker, Susan Sarandon, James Franco, Jason Patric, Frances Fisher

Cast:

Tommy Lee JonesHank Deerfield
Charlize TheronDet. Emily Sanders
Jason PatricLt. Kirklander
Susan SarandonJoan Deerfield
James FrancoSgt. Dan Carnelli
Barry CorbinArnold Bickman
Josh BrolinChief Buchwald
Frances FisherEvie
Wes ChathamCorporal Steve Penning
Jake McLaughlinSpc. Gordon Bonner
Mehcad BrooksSpc. Ennis Long
Jonathan TuckerMike Deerfield
Wayne DuvallDetective Nugent
Roman ArabiaPrivate Robert Ortiez (as Victor Wolf)
Brent BriscoeDetective Hodge
Greg SeranoDetective Manny Nunez (as Greg Serrano)
Brent SextonLt. Burke
Devin BrochuDavid Sanders
Zoe KazanAngie
Glenn TarantoDetective Wayne
Jennifer Siebel NewsomJodie (as Jennifer Siebel)
Joseph BertótSchool Janitor (as Joseph Bertot)
Rick GonzalezPhone Technician (as Rick Gonzales)
Loren HaynesPolice Photographer
Babak TaftiIraqi Prisoner
Sean HuzeCaptain Jim Osher
Jack MerrillMedical Examiner
Kathy LamkinChicken Shack Manager
David DotyTruck Parts Salesman
Pab SchwendimannPussy’s Bouncer
Josh MeyerJoseph R. Millard
Arron ShiverCop
Jo Harvey AllenJo Anne
Chris BrowningChecker Box Bartender
David HouseMorgue Officer
Matthew PageGuard (as Matt Page)
Pierre BarreraTD’s Bartender
Mike HatfieldJo Anne’s Husband
James HaggisSoccer Ball Player
Randall AdamsNew Recruit
Hans StecklyCorporal Steckly
Arlin AlcalaNeighbor (uncredited)
James BlackburnCowboy (uncredited)
Damion CruzzSoldier Sam (uncredited)
Diego DeaneMilitary Police Officer (uncredited)
Esodie GeigerMilitary Nurse (uncredited)
Karen M. HudsonOffice Detective (uncredited)
Laurie JohnsonNeighbor (uncredited)
Daniel KnightDetective (uncredited)
William E. MarshallDetective (uncredited)
Tracy MelhornBartender (uncredited)
Z. Ray WakemanDetective Driver (uncredited)
Brandon WeaverMorgue Tech (uncredited)
Wil WillisAngie’s Husband (uncredited)

Sources: imdb & wikipedia

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