Vietnam War Movies: The Pocket Essential Guide

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A group of new recruits arrive and are put under the charge of the aggressive drill instructor. At the end of the training Pyle loses the plot and kills the instructor and then himself. Vietnam, Journalist Private Joker is shipped out to cover the fighting of the Tet Offensive. The unit he joins comes under attack from a female sniper. Joker finds the sniper and kills her. The opening thirty minutes of Full Metal Jacket takes the theme to new levels.

Cinematographer: Marc Irwin.

DragonKhe (1954) // Vietnam War Movies Of All Time HDTimothy

Editor: Stephen E Rivkin. Cast: Gene Hackman Lt. Summary: When army reconnaissance expert Lt. Hambleton is shot down over Vietnam a rescue operation is mounted to keep him from falling into enemy hands. But Hambleton finds that war on the ground is a lot more personal than from 30, feet above the battlefield. Subtext: The oldies are the goodies. Aging fly boys Hambleton and Clark are the sensible, caring sensitive face of modern warfare.

Hotshot young pilots like Carver treat the war as a game and end up suffering the consequences. Youth, according to the film, is a curse and the war would clearly be better off being left to more sensible aging warriors like Hackman and Glover. The young pilot who ignores orders and tries to land in a hot LZ to save Hambleton is killed along with his crew. Meanwhile, on the ground, Hambleton realizes that gung-ho heroics are meaningless.

The war is clearly wrong on a humanitarian level. This Lt. Producer: Alan Barnette.

Writers: Christopher Crowe, Jack Thibeau. Cinematographer: David Gribble. Editor: Doug Ibold. The evidence points to a high-ranking US Army officer and the cops find that their superiors are blocking the investigation at every turn. With the help of local French nun Nicole, the cops narrow down their list of suspects to just two men.

But could they have overlooked something? Background: Misogynist, racist and deeply disturbing, Saigon is an unusual entry in the Vietnam War cycle.

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Tellingly, women are styled as either white-skinned angels or yellowskinned whores—quite literally since the only female characters are Asian prostitutes and a French Catholic nun! The film ends with Nicole being confirmed as a nun while the two leads joke about a local prostitute who has the biggest nipples ever seen. So much for feminism, then. Producers: Michael Nolin, Jill Griffith. Writer: Patrick Duncan. Cinematographer: Alan Caso.

Editor: Stephen Purvis. Summary: A two-man documentary crew accompanies a long-range reconnaissance patrol LRRP as they head into the bush.

Visiting and crawling through the Vietcong tunnels! | TRVLMRK

None of the troopers are happy about the presence of the camera or the film-makers and eventually disaster strikes. Picking up on the fact that Vietnam was a war mediated by images and a war that was already a movie before Hollywood had the courage to turn it into one, Mopic foregrounds issues of war and representation with a neat plot device the camera crew that extended the lates attempt to bring a new authenticity to films about the war.

Duncan is careful to ensure that almost all the action is seen through the Mopic 16mm lens, thereby ensuring our identification with the platoon as they talk directly into the camera. Producer: Art Linson. Cinematographer: Stephen H Burum. Editor: Bill Pankow. Summary: Squad Sergeant Meserve flips, kidnaps a local Vietnamese girl and encourages his squad to gang-rape her. Ignoring the objections of new guy Eriksson, the squad ultimately kills her. After surviving an assassination attempt by Meserve, Eriksson brings charges against the squad and justice is served. Subtext: Casualties Of War treats the kidnapping, brutalisation and rape of the Vietnamese woman as a metaphor for the conflict itself.

In addition, it raises questions about the bond that exists between fighting men.

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Background: Filmed in the wake of Platoon, Casualties Of War is a worthy attempt to breathe life back into the near-dead combat film by confronting the American catalogue of war atrocities head-on. But for all its anger, Casualties Of War never transcends the sum of its very derivative parts. De Palma is a director familiar with the Vietnam conflict two films from his early days as a low-budget filmmaker—the rarely seen Greetings and Hi Mom!

Tigerland Crew: Director: Joel Schumacher.

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Cinematographer: Matthew Libatique. Editor: Mark Stevens. Summary: Fort Polk, Louisiana.

After having been through their basic training a squad of infantry recruits destined for Vietnam begin their eight weeks of combat training. Private Bozz has a reputation as a troublemaker. During the course of the film he helps three recruits get a discharge from the army and then sacrifices his own chance of escape to save his friend Paxton from Vietnam. Subtext: Taking the first segment of Full Metal Jacket as its starting point, Tigerland updates the boot camp movie for the post-Vietnam generation.

Mixing anti-authoritarianism with a dark streak of pessimism, Tigerland occupies a self-consciously anti-war position. Yet it also has hidden depths. As his superiors point out, Bozz is a born platoon leader—generous, level-headed and concerned about the welfare of his fellow men—but he has no stomach for a war in which civilians are being killed or for an army in which the recruits are taught how to use a standard infantry radio as a device for genital torture. What Tigerland recognizes is that by , Vietnam had degenerated into a bloodbath where only psychopaths and baby killers could flourish and any hope of military service with honour had long since been shelled into a distant memory.

In comparison films about returning vets and their crazed antics were cheap to produce and often had enough lurid potential to guarantee an audience.


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The exploitation film market developed in the wake of the Second World War, coming into its own in the s and s. Low-budget film-makers, and even mainstream Hollywood directors, had been obsessed with features about bikers, delinquents and beatniks ever since The Wild One had proved to be such an unexpected success. With plenty of room for sex and violence and violence and sex these films were guaranteed to turn a profit. Vietnam proved a godsend to the exploitation film market. Almost all of these films were disposable low-budget productions with few stars or famous directors—with some exceptions: the lowbudget The Visitors, for instance, was helmed by no less than Elia Kazan.

Most focused on psychologically rather than physically crippled veterans and their propensity for violence. Both World Wars had been followed by a riotous period of celebration—the Roaring Twenties and the consumerist boom of the s. Vietnam was unique in that it was being fought while America partied. How could anyone be surprised that the returning vets were being portrayed as being pissed off? Perhaps the vet films had a cathartic effect—on some level they gave the stay-at-home audience the opportunity to shed some of their collective guilt about sending these boys off to fight by letting them identify with the angry vet for ninety minutes.

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In the same year, Coming Home became the first mainstream, award-winning film to deal with the vet issue and even in the s, veterans could be found in everything from First Blood to Lethal Weapon to the horror comedy House. As most vets are now somewhat too old to be credible action heroes, the vet movie may finally be at an end. Cinematographer: Fred J Koenekamp. Editor: Larry Heath, Marion Rothman. The evil townsfolk are harassing the students at a nearby desert school, a kind of hippie commune prototype. Subtext: Half Native American Billy Jack is a born loser both because of his traumatic Vietnam experience and his racial background.

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