War is the ultimate human drama. Unfortunately, that drama is nearly always a terrible tragedy. So goes “Coward”, a short film by Stephen Murphy, Dave Komaroni and David Roddham. The 25-minute film, a staff pick on Vimeo, weaves the shocking front line realities of World War I with the mental debilitation caused by shell shock into a truly unnerving experience. And the film does more than spur thought through grisly, brute force (and excellent battlefield scenes on a small budget) — it honors the victims of shell shock, and those men who were mistreated and harshly punished for their misunderstood wounds during the Great War.
The tragedy of shell shock in WWI
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