(WVUE) - The National World War II Museum hosted a star-studded premiere for a movie that opens next month.
"Hacksaw Ridge" is about Army medic Desmond Doss, who served during the Battle of Okinawa. Doss refused to kill and became the first conscientious objector in American history to be awarded the Medal of Honor.
"They haven't had to enhance a lot of stuff here the way often times they do," said Desmond Doss Jr., the son of the main character. "It's just a stand-alone story. I think Mel Gibson did something that very few people could have done.
"They showed this movie to me earlier. I came out and said, 'I saw a different movie than you saw. You saw a war movie, I saw a love story about a man who loved his mother, he loved his church, he loved his wife, he loved his fellow soldiers, he loved his country, he loved the principles that guided him.' It's a love story wrapped in all of this violence and bloodshed and horrific carnage. The contrast was necessary because who else could go through all of this and be unwavered in any way from his intrinsic beliefs. I think it was spectacular. I'm not a person who really likes to see a lot of violence and stuff, but in this case, it served a purpose."
Director Mel Gibson said making a war movie about a conscientious objector was a special challenge.
"But that was also the amazing thing about it," Gibson said. "Someone can go right into the very heart of the worst place on earth, into the hell of war itself -- it was a bad battle, Okinawa was a huge loss of life -- to actually go in there without a weapon and lay his life on the line continuously. And everyone else is reduced to the level of an animal and this guy is exploring his higher self. He's doing the highest levels of, like 'Greater love hath no man than he lay down his life for his bro.' This is not a war movie, it's a love story, although it has to be graphic to give you an idea of what it was like. I think even that notion not only honors our veterans, but to sort of juxtapose Desmond Doss' actions against that sort of backdrop. Wow! What a man!"
"Hacksaw Ridge" will be in theaters nationwide Nov. 3.