DOASKDOTELL MOVIE REVIEW of Any Motherís Son

 

Title: Any Motherís Son

Release Date:1998

Nationality and Language: USA, English

Running time: about 96 Minutes

MPAA Rating:n/a (suggest PG-13)

Distributor and Production Company: Lifetime

Director; Writer:

Producer:

Cast:††

Technical:

Relevance to doaskdotell site: Gays in the military, anti-gay hate crimes

Review: This film drama (on the women's Cable Station, Lifetime) depicts the events surrounding the grisly murder of gay Navy sailor Allen Schindler by Terry Helvey off duty in a men's room in Japan. Helvey, high on steroids, had followed Schindler with the intention of beating him to death. Schindler had been a sailor on the Belleau Wood, a small assault ship and, since he was being harassed by a relatively rough crew, he had already requested an honorable discharge from his commander for homosexuality. This all took place in 1992, just before President Clinton's election caused a new debate over gays in the military to erupt.

Schindler's murder was every bit as brutal as the recent killing of Matthew Shepard in Wyoming. Afterwards, the Navy would bungle horribly in reporting the killing to Schindler's mother, Dorothy Hajdys. Helvey would get life in military prison, but Mrs. Hajdys, with the assist of Servicemember's Legal Defense Network (SLDN), would repeatedly have to oppose clemency hearings.

Some units in the military are indeed populated with members who come from poorer educational backgrounds and who are more suspectible to "irrational" prejudice concerning "masculinity." The military seems to want to exploit these people rather than address the problem.

 

Related reviews: Serving in Silence, Anatomy of a Hate CrimeSoldierís Girl

 

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