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The Moment a War Hero Becomes a War Hero

A moving, gorgeous animation about World War II airman Andrew Mynarski.

On June 12, 1944, Andrew Mynarski and his men flew over Northern France when they were hit with cannon fire and their plane was set ablaze. The crew grabbed their parachutes and jumped out. Mynarski, whose clothes were already on fire, was about to do the same when he saw his friend Pat Brophy trapped in the turret. He tried to open the door and free Brophy.

In “Mynarski Death Plummet,” above, from 2015, filmmaker Matthew Rankin dramatizes these fateful few minutes in the style of classic film with experimental animation like bleaching, scratching, hand-painting. The beautiful film turns haunting as it depicts the moment a war hero becomes a war hero.