TV Club: The directors grapple with bombings and bureaucracy in a gripping Five Came Back

The next time someone tells you documentaries are dull, there’s another title you can add to the long, long list of films that will prove them wrong. (Yes, it’s the one that’s the subject of this review.)

In “The Mission Begins,” the solid, if occasionally slow, first outing for Netflix’s Five Came Back, groundwork was being laid. That’s true of the events covered, as well as for the series—John Ford built the Field Photo Unit in advance of American involvement in the war, Frank Capra went to Washington to figure out how, exactly, to use film to motivate U.S. troops, William Wyler fought to include a villainous German in Mrs. Miniver, and so on. It’s perfectly understandable that with a roster of historical and contemporary filmmakers as stacked as this one, director Laurent Bouzereau and writer Mark Harris would need to take …

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