This feature documentary profiles poet John McCrae, from his childhood in Ontario to his years in medicine at McGill University and the WWI battlefields of Belgium, where he cared for wounded soldiers. Generations of schoolchildren have recited McCrae’s iconic poem “In Flanders Fields,” but McCrae and Alexis Helmer—the young man whose death inspired the poem—have faded from memory. This film seeks to revive their stories through a vivid portrait of a great man in Canadian history.
Ages 12 to 17
Study Guide - Guide 1
English Language Arts - CanLit
History - World War I
Supply copies of the poem to the class; read it aloud. Discuss McCrae’s inspiration to compose the poem. Why is it important to remember the soldiers who died at war? What is their legacy to us?