A Few Good Men


You can't handle the truth!

From A Few Good Men, 1992



Written by Aaron Sorkin, the play, A Few Good Men, was based on the real life experience of a Navy lawyer on his first case. In 1992 the work was adapted by Sorkin into a screenplay which was directed and produced by Rob Reiner and starred, Tom Cruise, Jack Nicolson, and Demi Moore. The movie starts with the Texas A&M drums corps (also known as the Fish Drill Team) doing a silent drill, which is worth watching in itself.

The story revolves around inexperienced military lawyers, led by Lt. Daniel Kaffee (Tom Cruise), who uncover a high-level conspiracy to cover up negligence on the part of the command at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Failure to transfer a Marine, Santiago, leads to his inadvertently being killed by another rather simple-minded Marine, Downey, and his buddy, Dawson.

Getting evidence to clear his clients of the charge of acting on their own becomes quite an ordeal for Kaffee and his team of Lt. Galloway (Demi Moore) and Lt. Weinberg (Kevin Pollak) . Finally, Kaffee puts Col. Nathan Jessep (Jack Nicholson) on the stand and goads him into admitting he gave the order. Jessep screams, “You can’t handle the truth!”

Col. Jessep is arrested, and Dawson and Downey are found not guilty of murder and conspiracy. However, they are found guilty of “conduct unbecoming” and are dishonorably discharged. Downey is shocked by this but is comforted by Kaffee who declares that Downey doesn’t have to wear a badge on his arm to have honor no matter what pain you're going through.

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