The General's Daughter (1999)

The General's Daughter Poster

When the body of Army Capt. Elizabeth Campbell is found on a Georgia military base, two investigators, Warrant Officers Paul Brenner and Sara Sunhill, are ordered to solve her murder. What they uncover is anything but clear-cut. Unseemly details emerge about Campbell's life, leading to allegations of a possible military coverup of her death and the involvement of her father, Lt. Gen. Joseph Campbell.

"The General's Daughter" is a 1999 mystery movie directed by Simon West, starring John Travolta, James Cromwell, and Madeleine Stowe. Travolta provides a remarkable efficiency as Warrant Officer Paul Brenner, an elite detective with Army Criminal Investigations Division, looking into the murder of a high-ranking general's daughter. The film is influenced by the successful novel of the very same name by Nelson DeMille.

The film is set at a military base in Georgia. Captain Elisabeth Campbell (Leslie Stefanson), the child of Lieutenant General Joseph Campbell (James Cromwell), is discovered dead under suspicious scenarios. Her generally accepted persona as a highly regarded officer by day takes a dramatic turn when it's found she led a secret life by night.

Paul Brenner (John Travolta), a primary warrant officer in the army's Criminal Investigation Division, and his partner, rape expert Sarah Sunhill (Madeleine Stowe), are appointed to investigate the murder. Brenner likewise takes place to share a romantic past with Sunhill.

Suspense Unraveling
As the examination unfolds, Brenner discovers Elisabeth's hidden life and a plethora of potential suspects within the military community. A web of secrets entangling sexual misbehavior, institutional corruption, and misconduct operations is exposed.

Additionally, a chilling discovery that Elisabeth was involved in psychological operations (psy-ops) and utilized to break down detainees of war is made throughout their examination. This adds another layer of murk-- hinting towards the possibility of her death being a revenge act.

The Final Twist
The investigation leads Brenner and Sunhill to Colonel Robert Moore (James Woods) and Colonel Kent (Timothy Hutton), both having had relationships with the deceased. The fact unravels when it's discovered Elisabeth was gang-raped by 6 associates throughout her West Point days, and everybody, including her father, the General, understood but chose to look away, setting off the chain of events leading to her murder.

The significant climax exposes Colonel Kent as the murderer who eliminated Elisabeth to avoid her from exposing her West Point gang-rape and the army's cover-up. The discoveries expose the corruption and moral degradation within the army's higher ranks, as the General likewise gets apprehended for the cover-up.

"The General's Daughter" is a chilling commentary on the scary lengths organizations can go to preserve their sanctity, even if it indicates jeopardizing private rights. It's a deeply entangled web of power, corruption, secrets, and deception that keeps the audience on edge till the final discovery. The film remarkably showcases the dark underbelly of the military, raising concerns about the expected nobility and honor related to such organizations.

Top Cast