War Machine

Synopsis: A general from the US is sent to Afghanistan to 'clean' the situation up after eight years of war in the country. He finds himself amongst tired soldiers and disillusioned politicians eager to leave. In this situation he feels his mission is to 'win' the war, something deemed impossible by everyone around him.
Genre: Comedy, Drama, War
Director(s): David Michôd
Production: Netflix
  2 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
122 min


Ah, America.

You beacon of composure

and proportionate response.

You bringer of calm

and goodness to the world.

What do you do

when the war you're fighting

just can't possibly be won

in any meaningful sense?

Well, obviously,

you sack the guy not winning it,

and you bring in some other guy.

In 2009, that war was Afghanistan.

And that other guy...

was Glen.

You boys ready?

Let's go win this thing.


So this is what I learned

about four-star General Glen McMahon.

He was born to a military family

at Fort Leavenworth.

Graduated West Point in 1976.

Ranger school in '79.

He had a graduate degree in political

affairs and military history from Yale.

He was both a straight-A student

and a troublemaker.

He once famously attempted

to stick a lit cherry bomb

up his sleeping drill sergeant's ass.

He was loved by the men and women

who served under him.

Three, two, one, let's go.

Never afraid

to get his hands dirty.

Yeah, it's flash time.

Never willing to send his troops

anywhere he wouldn't go himself.

He was known variously as the Lion King,

the G-Man, Big Glen

and, most commonly, the Glenimal.

He was like a throwback to another era.

His hand was bent into a permanent claw,

like it was still clutching

a World War II cigar

his modern, fitness-fanatic self

wouldn't allow him to smoke.

After a successful stint

running the secretive special operations

killing machine in Iraq,

Glen was appointed leader of US

and coalition forces in Afghanistan.

A war which, as he saw it,

wasn't being won

'cause it wasn't being led.


We're all very excited to have you here.

It's an honor to meet you.

I'm excited to be here.

Ain't that right, Greg?

Yes, indeed, sir. You're very excited.

Somehow, while he was in Iraq,

Glen found time

to author a book on leadership,

entitled One Leg at a Time,

Just Like Everybody Else.

In it, he wrote,

"Men are imperfect creatures.

Left to their own devices,

all they really want to do is play

with their d*cks and eat chicken. "

For all his many achievements

leading special operations in Iraq,

I think most of us here

will know General McMahon

as the man who took out al-Zarwaqi,

who kicked al-Qaeda in the sack.

You're welcome.

We have a warrior at the helm,

and it's a pleasure to have you, sir.

Glen was known as a humble man.

But humble in that way that says,

"My humility makes me better than you. "

He was famous for his Spartan regime

of routine and discipline.

He ate one meal a day.

He slept four hours per night.

He ran seven miles every morning.

In Iraq, he transformed special operations

with what he called

systemic negation

of repetitive procedural practice.

Or, to the acronym-obsessed military,


We got Italy in there.

That's the Dutch.

We got Poland, Macedonia, Ukraine.

We got Australia over there,

Croatia, Belgium-

Okay, that'll do. Bite-size chunks, hmm?

Let's knock this on the head.

All right.

Basically, he was a master

of systems organization.

Which he'd kind of need to be,

if he was to corral

this 43-nation coalition of the willing.

- May I help you?

- No, finish your phone call.

The war can wait.

What can I do for you, General?

I want to pull everyone

out of their offices.

I want to open this place up.

I came in here

to speak with you about that.

I have only ten men

to lead here in Afghanistan, huh.

So it make no sense for me

to be sit out there with everybody else.

I get it. All right?

But everybody has a reason

not to be out there with everybody else.

Austria only has two guys here.

Iceland has seven guys.

Rate this script:(0.00 / 0 votes)

David Michôd

David Michôd (born 30 November 1972) is an Australian film director, screenwriter, producer and actor. He is best known for directing the critically acclaimed 2010 film Animal Kingdom and the 2014 film The Rover. He also co-wrote Hesher. more…

All David Michôd scripts | David Michôd Scripts

FAVORITE (0 fans)

Submitted on August 05, 2018

Discuss this script with the community:



    Translate and read this script in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)


    Use the citation below to add this screenplay to your bibliography:


    "War Machine" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 15 Jun 2021. <https://www.scripts.com/script/war_machine_23052>.

    We need you!

    Help us build the largest writers community and scripts collection on the web!

    Watch the movie trailer

    War Machine

    The Marketplace:

    Sell your Script !

    Get listed in the most prominent screenplays collection on the web!

    Browse Scripts.com

    The Studio:

    ScreenWriting Tool

    Write your screenplay and focus on the story with many helpful features.