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Mel Gibson hopes Hacksaw Ridge 'honours' soldiers

MoviesBy Sunday World
Mel Gibson hopes Hacksaw Ridge 'honours' soldiers

Mel Gibson hopes 'Hacksaw Ridge' draws attention to the plight of soldiers.

The 60-year-old Hollywood star directed the new biographical war film about conscientious objector Desmond Doss and has revealed he hopes it will "honour" people who work in the armed forces.

Speaking at the Venice Film Festival, Mel explained: "The man who refuses to touch a weapon, and do something much higher than something as venal as killing in a war; it's a very high calling ... You have to love the warrior, and give him homage and honour him. I hope this film does that."

Mel admitted making a war film also created its own unique challenges for a director.

He told the Guardian newspaper: "The important thing about depicting battle on screen, is to be clear with it, and not confusing.

"You give the impression of chaos, but be absolutely clear what it is you want the audience to see and extract from the sequences.

"It's all about screen direction and knowing who the players are; you have to approach it almost as a sporting event. It sounds mercenary to say that about battle; but if you are not able to follow the strategies, somehow [the audience] become less involved."

'Hacksaw Ridge' centres on the story of Doss, the first conscientious objector to be awarded the Medal of Honor for his efforts as a combat medic.

Doss was a Seventh Day Adventist who refused to carry a gun - and Mel has admitted to being captivated by his religious commitment.

He said: "It's undeniable what the essence of Doss was: he was a man of great courage and strong conviction, and strong faith; to go into a battle zone like that - which the Japanese called it 'steel rain', with the artillery and lead flying around - to go into that armed with only your faith, your faith has to be strong in you.

"That's an undeniable part of the story I found really inspiring."