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The True Story of Charlie Wilson (History Channel) (2008)

 NR |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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The True Story of Charlie Wilson (History Channel) + Charlie Wilson's War (Widescreen Edition)
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Product Details

  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • 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: April 8, 2008
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000ZDQI9E
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,146 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

No one suspected that playboy Congressman Charlie Wilson and his partner Gust Avrakotos--an aggressive CIA agent nicknamed Dr. Dirty --would mastermind the covert arming of the Afghan Mujahideen in what became the largest and most successful campaign in CIA history.

THE TRUE STORY OF CHARLIE WILSON profiles this unorthodox alliance, and chronicles the epic journey the two men undertook to guarantee the success of their freedom fighters. Now, THE HISTORY CHANNEL examines the unforeseen and far-reaching effects of the CIA s efforts to assist the Afghan rebels in the fight against the Soviet Union--namely, the Afghan uprising against the West. Revealing the full story behind the Hollywood blockbuster Charlie Wilson s War, THE TRUE STORY OF CHARLIE WILSON penetrates the inner-workings of the CIA to uncover the men and the designs that have returned to haunt America today.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes James Bond look like a third grader. May 4, 2008
Verified Purchase
I had never heard of this documentary until I first viewed it on THE HISTORY CHANNEL. Initially I thought it was some "action adventure" fiction type. It did not take long to figure out this was a real event that changed the history of the world: was responsible for kicking the Soviets out of Afghanistan and led to the demise of the Soviet Union.

What is so amazing is that one "on the wild side" U.S. senator and one "shunned/rouge" CIA agent was responsible for all of this. They did not just sit behind some desk either! They were on their own. Of course that is until near the very end when the CIA wanted some of the glory too.

This is a documentary you do not want to miss! The Hollywood version, "Charlie Wilson's War" staring Tom Hanks is; I'm sure a good movie but in no way can portray the real life events of of Charlie Wilson and CIA agent Gust Avrakotos.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The True Story of Charlie Wilson May 11, 2008
I am a lawyer and actually knew Charlie Wilson from his first term in Congress--he appointed me an intern in his Washington office in 1974. I used a 4-minute clip from this movie of his explaining how he got into politics (a neighbor poisoned Charlie's dog when he was 13, and he skillfully organized constituents to vote the guy out of office by 16 votes) in a guest lecture I gave to a college government class on local politics. It was a big hit with the students. The movie is much more interesting than the Hollywood film starring Tom Hanks (even though Hanks does a great job) because it shows the real people and events, not actors and graphics.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The real Charlie Wilson in his own words May 25, 2008
By Jeedgr
Verified Purchase
If you want to meet the real Charlie Wilson and the real exchanges that took place as he forstered the Afgan effort to drive the Russians out of of Afganistan, then you'll want to see the History Channels "True Story". It involves so much detail about how things get done in Washington and in Congress that if your like me you'll watch it over and over. This is no movie made up by Hollywood, but, except for some parts, it puts together documentary scenes with the protagonist himself, Congressman Charlie Wilson, telling story, how he got Congress to fund the weapons and supplies to the Afgans, how he made visits to the right world leaders to help instigate it, and without a lot of publicity.

One scene that the History Channel had that unfortunately did not get onto the DVD is the finale of the Russians, as they were leaving Afghanistan across freedom bridge, requested that Charlie show up in military uniform. Charlie thought the Russians were going to shoot him since he was not at that moment a civilian, but they wanted to salute the man who pulled off uniting a people who drove them out.

Unfortunately also, we never got hear Charlies views and efforts to overcome the Pakistani's who never could be trusted in the beginning and are doing everything they can today to support the middle-east terrorists following the Bin Laden cult, and of course to continue to be one of the 80 or so despot governments that now run the UN.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
By Toriach
Verified Purchase
My introduction to Charlie Wilson was through the movie starring Tom Hanks. This however got me interested enough to look for both the book and the History Channel documentary. The documentary while interesting dove tailed in some ways almost too closely with the movie. It is only after about the half way point that it goes into greater detail about what really happened, and even still it offers only a bare bones sketch compared to the book. While I do think the documentary is interesting and worthwhile, I would recommend it as a companion to the movie and book, as I do not think it is strong enough on its own merits.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved it! July 18, 2008
Verified Purchase
I had never heard of Charlie Wilson before. Back when all these events were taking place in the '80s I was busy having babies and (to my deterrment) ignored politics. No interest at all; blissfully ignorant. I did not bother seeing the move Charlie Wilson's War at the theater, and actually had never heard of it till it was nominated for some Oscar Awards. I was channel surfing one day and came across this documentary on the History channel. I watched it and was so uplifted by it that I had to see the Tom Hanks movie. Charlie Wilson is no saint, which he readily admits.

This is a wonderful American story and I think the documentary is even more entertaining than the movie. I haven't bought this DVD yet, but I think I will. It's excellent!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars straightforward presentation... fascinating story... November 19, 2008
By W.Kim
I haven't yet seen "Charlie Wilson's War" but I am watching the HIstory Channel's "The Truth @ Charlie Wilson's War," which thankfully is free of the bombast that nearly spoils some History Channel documentaries. But then the presentation doesn't really need it. The real life Charlie Wilson's Afghanistan adventure makes for a wild story, complete with high class 'socialites' determining the fate of nations, party-boy politicians, drug use scandals, illegal arms smuggling operations, and the lives of millions on the line - at least the Afghans wanted Wilson's help (and that makes a big difference for me), and whatever has followed since, he definitely delivered, in his own unique way. There's nothing fancy about the storytelling here, but the story doesn't need the embellishment.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great story. True American
Charlie Wilson was a man's man, great story. True American hero
Published 22 days ago by Angelo Lopez
5.0 out of 5 stars Good man, good initial outcome
Charlie got the Russians out of Afghanistan. Unfortunately, the United States didn't learn anything about the Afghanistan people and went in after the Russians left and made more... Read more
Published 29 days ago by Harry
5.0 out of 5 stars Really explains Afghanistan well!
I show this to my AP students after the AP exam every year. This really helps them understand Afghanistan and Argold there in a much larger context. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Jen Adams
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Interesting History Channel Video
If you enjoy political history you will find Charlie Wilson a character worth knowing. Good job History Channel. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Through My Eyes
5.0 out of 5 stars The True Story of Charlie Wilson (History channel)
The History Channel version was so very well done. They say truth is stranger than fiction. This was a most interesting time in our history. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Barbaraadamschristie
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie.
Just love this movie God bless Charlie Wilson, and Gust Avrocotos.
I think that this is one of the best movies ever its a must see for all !
Published 13 months ago by johnkibbons
5.0 out of 5 stars Watch this before (or after) you see Charlie Wilson's War
Well done, well paced, and even handed, this documentary is the disc to watch after (or before) you see Charlie Wilson's War. Read more
Published 17 months ago by V. R. Padgett
5.0 out of 5 stars Charlie Wilson Story
A very thorough telling of Charlie's story...
He may have been rather excentric, he was a good American and did some good things!
Nice job by the History Channel...
Published 18 months ago by Charles G. Cline
5.0 out of 5 stars country boy
Charlie Wilson...who'd a thought it, who'd a thought it,who'd a thought it,who'd a thought it,who'd a thought it,who'd a thought it,who'd a thought it,who'd a thought it,who'd a... Read more
Published on October 2, 2012 by Inverted Nipples
4.0 out of 5 stars Charlie Wilsons War
Product was received on time and in good condition. The content was as expected and even though I had seen it before about 1 1/2 years ago I enjoyed seeing it once more. Read more
Published on July 5, 2012 by HarryC
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