A Midnight Clear

Synopsis: Set in 1944 France, in the Ardennes forest region, an American Intelligence Squad locates a German platoon wishing to surrender rather than die in Germany's final war offensive. The two groups of men, isolated from the war at present, put aside their differences and share a Christmas celebration. The surrender plan includes a mock battle that turns bad when one of the soldiers is unaware of the surrender plan.
Genre: Drama, War
Director(s): Keith Gordon
Production: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
108 min

It's too hot.

When I get back,

I'm gonna put it...


Mother's the oldest

in our squad.

He just had his 26th birthday, and

two days later his baby was born dead.

We call him Mother... Wilkins...

because he's always hounding us

for being sloppy, bugging us...

about leaving things around.

They're a little bent.

You want me

to turn you in, Vance?

Between the stuff you did

and the stuff I make up...

I could at least get you

to a psychiatrist in some hospital.

Couldn't fool anybody.

Wouldn't let me do

all this sh*t.

Only you were here.

Doesn't really count.

You sure fooled me, Mother.

I'll tell you that.

You also broke a squad rule.

What rule?

Well, you said "sh*t."

What would Father say?

Father Mundy invented our squad

"no obscenity"rule.

We wanna make it clear

we're not actually part of this army.

Yes, we have a squad father too.

Mother Wilkins, Father Mundy.

Father Mundy was gonna be a priest,

but never made it through the seminary.

The next guard was taken by Bud Miller,

our mad mechanical genius...

and resident wit...

and Stan Shutzer,

our avengingJewish angel.

They're supposed to be 12 in

Intelligence and Reconnaissance squads.

Ours is down to six.

Mel Avakian,

our best remaining soldier...

became corporal to our squad

at the same time I made sergeant.

It wasn't

for anything we did.

Except stay alive.

He hasn't sewn on

his stripes either.

Our regimental commander

is Major Griffin.

Griffin was a mortician

in civilian life.

His main passion now

seems to be generating business...

for his army counterparts.

It's thanks to Griffin

and his military mortuary skills...

that I've made my recent

headlong leap to three stripes.

We lost half our squad, attempting one

of his map-inspired, ill-conceived...

recon patrols.

When I say "lost,"

I mean "killed."

Nobody in the army ever admits

that someone on our side is killed.

They're either lost,

like Christopher Robin...

hit, as in a batter

hit by a pitched ball...

or they get "it"

like in hide-and-go-seek.

Or maybe they get it

as with an ambiguous joke.

Not one of the six killed

had an army intelligence score...

of less than 150.

We gained a few miles

of European real estate...

and lost the beginnings to untold

generations of very bright people.

I think the army

considered this a good deal.

So now we've been moved north

into the Ardennes Forest...

to await replacements.

It's become a kind

of frontline halfway house...

for straightening out

our nerves.

I'm not sure

I can be straightened out.

I'm scared all the time now.

It's mid-December, 1944.

My family name is Knott.


My parents named me William.

By the third grade,

I was Will Knott.

I've learned to live with it.

What I wasn't prepared for

were the guys of the I & Rplatoon...

who decided I was

to be known as "Won't."

Let's go, Knott!

Back in Camp Shelby

before we shipped out...

Lieutenant Ware was told that

Intelligence was doing a lousy job.

He figured if he filled the squad

with intelligent soldiers...

he'd get better Intelligence.

He searched the regimental records for

the soldiers with the highest scores...

on the intelligence test...

and requisitioned us

as a squad.

Of course, six of us are dead.

So what's intelligence?

Jesus Christ, Knott.

Haven't you got them f***ing

sergeant stripes sewn on yet?

The supply sergeant says they're all

out. They're waiting on a new shipment.

Well, get some staff sergeant

stripes and cut 'em down.

That'd be destruction

of government property, sir.

Well, I just hope to hell that

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Keith Gordon

Keith Gordon (born February 3, 1961) is an American actor and film director. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "A Midnight Clear" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 13 May 2021. <https://www.scripts.com/script/a_midnight_clear_13735>.

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