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Combat Diary - The Marines of Lima Company (2006)

Michael Epstein  |  NR |  DVD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Directors: Michael Epstein
  • Producers: Michael Epstein, Caleb Medders, Dierdre O'Hearn, Jonathan Yellen, Nancy Dubuc
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: A&E Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: September 26, 2006
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000GJ0LG8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #139,197 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Combat Diary - The Marines of Lima Company" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Never before seen bonus footage
  • Slide show
  • Director biography and filmography

Editorial Reviews

Everyone nods and agrees that war is brutal; rarely is that brutality glimpsed as vividly as in Combat Diary - The Marines of Lima Company. During their 2005 tour of duty in Iraq, Lima Company--a unit of Marines, all from Ohio--lost 23 men on the front lines. Combat Diary combines footage shot by the Marines themselves with home digital cameras and interviews with many of the surviving soldiers and parents and wives of men who died. The soldier's footage ranges from bored hijinks to actual firefights, including a troubling, surreal scene of men in full gear with rifles ready patrolling through a crowded Iraqi bazaar. In frank, uncensored language, the men describe how excitement turns to terror and misery, how their friends were shot or set on fire; but even before these jolting stories are told, the price of war can be heard in their voices and seen in their faces. This, combined with interviews with a mother who's kept an answering machine message from her dead son and with a wife who was pregnant with her second child when she learned her husband had been killed, creates a potent documentary. Combat Duty makes no political statements; conservatives and liberals can read their own messages into the movie's stark, simple remembrances. But every American should watch Combat Diary and see, in the eyes of these men, what happens on the ground when a nation decides to go to war. --Bret Fetzer

Product Description

ONE TRAGIC MISSION. SEEN THROUGH THEIR CAMERAS. DESCRIBED IN THEIR WORDS. A war exposé unlike any other, COMBAT DIARY: THE MARINES OF LIMA COMPANY provides an unprecedented and harrowing firsthand account of life and death on the front lines of battle. Shot on home video cameras by the very soldiers who were part of the hardest hit combat unit of the Iraq War, this remarkable program weaves heart-pounding digital camera footage with revealing interviews following the action. From the initial enthusiasm of the newly deployed troops to the dramatic outcomes of their combat missions, the Marines of Lima Company bring the war home from the very heart of battle. Distinguished by powerful, unflinching imagery and the frank, heartfelt, and poignant words of the soldiers speaking directly to the viewer, COMBAT DIARY: THE MARINES OF LIMA COMPANY offers an honest and heartbreaking glimpse at the terrifying reality of war. DVD Features: Extended Footage with Commentary; Slide Show; Director’s Biography and Filmography

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best OIF documentary November 29, 2007
This is by far the best war documentary that covers the current conflicts. I am a Soldier with 2 tours in Iraq and I think this story is amazing. The actual Documentary itself was very well made and the whole thing is a tear fest. It is insane what these guys went through and I think every American should watch this film, these Marines of Lima CO are an inspiration for me. I am a Combat medic (the equivalent of a Corpsman) in the Army and for those of you that want to see the average experiences of the infantry in Iraq, this isn't average, this is the worst case scenerio.

Another film that is worth watching and I think shows the average experience of life in Iraq is Occupation: Dreamland, which follows the 82nd. Another one is Gunner Palace and it does reflect how a lot of support personnel are living in Iraq, yet the troops in it are an embarrassment to the Army. An amazing documentary that covers WW2 is The War by Ken Burns, nothing compares to it.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommended September 19, 2006
This is an excellent documentary that tells the story of not only Lima Company but of the 3/25. This DVD contains footage not seen in the A&E special (tracks their time in 29 Palms prior to their deployment to Iraq and others). Well worth the money and is highly recommended to all who want a small glimpse of combat in Iraq and its effect on a community.
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36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is a no non-sense account of 7 months on the ground in the Anbar province in Iraq with the Marines of Lima Company, 3rd Battalion, 25th Regiment, 4th Marine Division. A reserve company located in Columbus, Ohio, these are the images and recollections of average people put in extraordinary circumstances. The video comes, not from mainstream media, but from the Marines and Sailors themselves. Vivid, jarring images and factual, emotive commentary by members of a unit that was at the forefront of most major combat operations in the hardest fought region of Iraq in 2005. Having spent quite some time with most of these men, though I used to think of them as kids, even I was unprepared for the unwavering willingness to share their experiences of combat, emotion and loss. They are quite clear in their messages of why they fought and why they were willing to share their experiences. For our brothers. Semper Fidelis.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars real soldiers, real war, via home video July 14, 2007
This video diary is by soldiers and about soldiers, specifically, the 184 marines of Lima Company, a reserve unit from Columbus, Ohio, that was deployed to Iraq from February 28, 2005 to September 30, 2005. The film begins with their jaunty send-off and ends with their tearful reunions amongst a flag-waving crowd waiting for them in the rain. "No one told us we couldn't," remarked one marine about filming their war experiences on home video cameras, "so we did." Many of the reservists thought they might be sidelined to some insignificant duty where they wouldn't screw up the real war. That was not to be. Lima Company saw significant battle and lost 23 comrades during their seven month tour. You see first hand how and why. The film alternates between their home videos of the war and their commentaries about their experiences once they got home. We also hear several families relive how and when they heard that they had lost a son in Lima Company. This is no Hollywood production, and that, along with learning what life is like for a soldier in battle, are the film's greatest strengths.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Have, Disturbing View of War February 16, 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Let me preface this review by stating that my comment about disturbing needs to be explained as follows: Here we are, sitting at home, going through our daily routine of work, after school activities, and evenings in front of the TV, while the United States is at war. Let me say that again, the United States is at war. We (Americans) live our lives as if nothing occurs outside of our borders. Sure, most of us "support our troops" but what does that really mean? Do we support our troops but not support the war? I am not sure if we can do one without the other. Myself, I support the war, and therefore support the troops and vice versa. Regardless, this documentary smacks me in the face, hard. I live in Ohio, and know the columbus area fairly well. To see these men go through what they have done and how it changes them and their families, real people from real suburbs, it hits home, and hard. So, it is disturbing to think how we go on day to day, and act as if this war is more like a distant news story, while our neighbors are risking their lives, and while their families risk losing their loved ones. Maybe we need a wake up call.

As the other reviewers have mentioned, this story of Lima Co. is a tear jerker. It is very well done, riveting, and true. No actors, no changing a story to make it more Hollywood worthy (as if Hollywood could ever put out a worthy war story), just real life. Buy it, watch it, and reflect. Then go do something to truly support our troops!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW!! January 29, 2009
As a teacher, I'm always looking for video to help the students visually process the information I have taught them.

To begin with, this movie jumps straight into how the war has affected the men of Lima company. As the movie progresses, the stories the soldiers tell along with the visual diary of their experienes begins to tug on the heart strings. The stories of the soldiers who were killed, are spoke about in a loving yet graphic way. One moving point in the video (among many) shows a marine who left a moving video message to his baby daughter, wishing her a happy birthday, before he was killed in action a day later. The marine's friend tells how the soldier's hand never touched the door he was about to knock on.

There was not a dry eye in my classroom, both male and female and the feedback I received was outstanding.

Do not miss the chance to view this video, you will feel a range of emotions you have never felt before!! A+ to the videographers for this magnificent documentary!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
You will be speechless after watching this
Published 28 days ago by Ryan McKee
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Deeply felt and moving. A must see DVD.
Published 1 month ago by Mariah's Mum
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Done.
I wanted to view this video because my son was in one of the tanks that was shown. It was difficult to watch, but I'm glad I did.
Published 8 months ago by Martha L. Slater
5.0 out of 5 stars It's a FACT JACK!
Finally something that is REAL! True emotion, not any Hollywood stuff here...sad but needs to be seen! I would go myself and serve if I could...God Bless Our Soldiers!! Read more
Published 11 months ago by mara kovalenko
5.0 out of 5 stars Combat Diary DVD review
This film deserves the 5 star rating for the "real" intense drama that is shown in a real war setting. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Harry Reibold
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for what I want
This is exactly what I wanted to do make mandatory restatement about how an item is, ok it is what I want and does fine
Published 18 months ago by TripleCrownJim
5.0 out of 5 stars Good to watch
5 stars rate , A Big Thank you to all the families that haved made a huge sacrifice by letting their loved ones fight for our freedom, watching all this war and combat docufilm... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Elizabeth Navarrete
5.0 out of 5 stars Gone but not forgotten
The stories of Lima Company is one of example of what sacrifice and duty and honor is all about. It was one in which my heart goes out to the families of the fallen of not just... Read more
Published on January 24, 2012 by Robert G
5.0 out of 5 stars Documentary that needs to be seen
This doc was largely made by the Marines themselves on video equipment they brought to Iraq. It tells a story that, while sometimes is hard to take, needs to be heard. Read more
Published on August 24, 2011 by J. Mutch
5.0 out of 5 stars The Real Deal
Simply stated, it is gut-wrenching, and that is how you know it's a true account of war. I will encourage my children to watch this when they are old enough so that they more... Read more
Published on April 12, 2011 by Cambria
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