Filmmaker Richard Linklater has long wanted to adapt the 2005 novel Last Flag Flying by Darryl Ponicsan. After years of trying to get the project off the ground, the film will finally see its world premiere on September 28th to open the New York Film Festival
Last Flag Flying stars Bryan Cranston, Steve Carell, and Laurence Fishburne as ex-Marine Sal Nealon, Navy Corps medic Larry “Doc” Shephard, and Reverend Richard Mueller, respectively. The Vietnam War veterans reunite decades after the war has ended to deal with the tragedy of a new battle, the Iraq War, when it claims the life of one of their sons. Today, the first trailer for Linklater’s passion project has debuted, and you can watch it above.
After its screening at the NYFF, Last Flag Flying will see a limited release from Lionsgate and Amazon Studios on November 3rd. The book was a follow-up to Ponicsan’s The Last Detail, a 1970 novel that was made into a 1973 film starring Jack Nicholson. Linklater’s film isn’t technically a sequel, though it features many of the same characters. Read the official synopsis below.
“In 2003, 30 years after they served together in the Vietnam War, former Navy Corps medic Larry ‘Doc’ Shepherd (Steve Carell) re-unites with ex-Marine Sal Nealon (Bryan Cranston) and Reverend Richard Mueller (Laurence Fishburne) on a different type of mission: to bury Doc’s son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War. Doc decides to forgo burial at Arlington Cemetery and, with the help of his old buddies, takes the casket on a bittersweet trip up the East Coast to his home in suburban New Hampshire. Along the way, Doc, Sal and Mueller reminisce and come to terms with shared memories of the war that continues to shape their lives.”