When Pat Tillman abandoned his multimillion-dollar contract with the NFL to enlist in the Army in 2002, it made news. When he was killed in 2004, he instantly became a symbol of patriotic fervor —the details of which were based on a lie. In the totally riveting and emotionally affecting documentary The Tillman Story (in select theaters 8/20), Tillman’s family and friends go about setting the record straight.
After Tillman’s family learned the details of Pat’s death—which were much more complex and tragic than the military wanted anyone to believe—and the (many) levels of deception involved in covering up his death, they were enraged, disillusioned and determined to do something about it. As interesting as it is to see how the media and the government unknowingly conspired to turn one man’s death into propaganda, it is the spirit of Tillman’s parents, brothers, wife and friends that is truly inspiring. And through their testimony, a sense of the real Pat Tillman emerges—ultimately far more heroic than any mythology.
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