One Soldier is a black-and-white short film (30 min) from 1999 starring and directed by Steven Wright. Also starring is Sandi Carroll.


The film is told entirely in retrospect, from a veteran of the American Civil War who may already have been executed. During the war, his job was to play music for a general who decided, in the soldier's words, "where hundreds of men would die." He has come home from the war skeptical about the meaning of life (or that there is a meaning), and trying to search for answers. He attempts to express his thoughts and doubts to his wife Becky, but she remains unconvinced that life is horrible and thinks he is crazy and going to hell. Convinced that people have come to have too much influence over art, he tries to play music not written by people by drawing music lines on his glasses and playing the stars as if they were notes. He also tries to get in touch with God, but, not wanting to be intrusive, he merely hangs about outside the church and whispers through the windows, "God...hey, God...what're you doin'?"