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Showing 1-10 of 828 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 1,528 reviews
on May 16, 2016
Being a Vietnam Vet, this movie brought back memories. Mel Gibson acting was superior. No doubt he did his home-work with filming this movie. The movie has its sad moments...but when American soldiers are dying in battle...you can't help cry a little bit. However, I recommend this movie to all Vietnam Vets...and get ready to shed some crying....deep down in your soul. A lot of young/0ld men died in this movie...that was actually fought in the central highlands or S. Vietnam. Today, when you see a man or woman in U.S. military dress...please shake their hand...and thank them for serving. No one ever thanked me for serving. But, I always shake any the hand of all U.S. military persons that I see. Only those that were there...really can understand...what we went through.. God bless our men and women serving our country. You will be proud of purchasing and watching this movie...it's well worth the money!
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on January 17, 2017
This is one of my very favorite movies. Mel Gibson and Sam Elliot are outstanding. Greg Kinnear shows his acting range. The action scenes are amazing and realistic. The private lives of the soldiers and their spouses are effectively revealed. Particularly effective are the devastating reactions of the wives and the ineptitude of the Army as telegrams are coldly delivered by taxi. Just enough shorts scenes are intercut to demonstrate how incompetent Army Command was in the early part of the Vietnam War. But most important to the entire story are the scenes of incredible bravery as American soldiers and their commanders fight for their lives. God bless the artillery and the inefficiency of the close ground support and the helicopter crews. Without them this battle this battle would have been a disaster.
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on May 26, 2014
This movie is based on the book of the same title about the Battle of Ia Drang during the Vietnam War by Lt. Col. Hal Moore and Joe Galloway. It is offers a more accurate portrayal of combat in the Vietnam War as compared to the more metaphorical movies such as APOCALYPSE NOW, FULL METAL JACKET or PLATOON. WE WERE SOLDIERS concentrates on heroism and sacrifice in Vietnam as opposed to the other aspects (anti-war/demoralized troops, civilian massacres, drugs, corruption,etc.) that are explored in the other Vietnam movies.

Randall Wallace (BRAVEHEART) is the writer/director. Mel Gibson stars as Moore with co-stars Sam Elliott (ROUGH RIDERS), Greg Kinnear (AS GOOD AS IT GETS), Madeleine Stowe (12 MONKEYS), Barry Pepper (SAVING PRIVATE RYAN), Keri Russell (THE AMERICANS), Jon Hamm (MAD MEN) and Clark Gregg (IRON MAN). The ill-fated French bugler in the opening scene is Randall Wallace's son.

WE WERE SOLDIERS lacks the stunning and artistic drama of SAVING PRIVATE RYAN, but it still delivers a very good portrayal of heroism and sacrifice in a very controversial war.

One highlight of the movie that, unfortunately, is only in the deleted scenes is Moore's post-battle meeting with Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara and Gen. William Westmoreland. This scene should have been kept in the movie because it sums up the Johnson Administration's (particularly McNamara) misguided philosophy in Vietnam.

WE WERE SOLDIERS is highly recommended as one of the best, if not the best, Vietnam War movies.
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on April 27, 2009
If you're looking for a good film about Vietnam, this should definitely be on your list. As with most Mel Gibson films, he wants to grab his audience by the heart (Hamelt, Braveheart, etc.). He does his homework, and with the help of Randal Wallace, always pulls if off. It's a true story, of course dramatized, about the first official combat mission in Vietnam by the 7th Air Cav. Gibson portrays Lt. Col. Hal Moore (who is now a retired Army General). There are quite a few emotional moments, but the battlefield action prevents it from becoming the cross-over date flick like Braveheart. However, the sountract is stunning and soul-stirring; and the music from the end credits "Mansions of the Lord" was sung at President Reagan's funeral; how much more of an honor can you get?
The only criticisms that I can give are trying to play a bit TOO much for the sympathy card, but after all, Gibson always gives you both barrels, so really can't be faulted. I would have rated it 5 stars except for the extra shmaltz; but without a doubt, I would place it in the top 10 of Vietnam war movies; and an excellent reminder of the men whose names are engraved on the Wall that you'd never connect with had you not viewed the film. I highly recommend it!
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on February 16, 2016
This is absolutely the best of all the Viet Nam War films period. Based on the book written by Lt General (Ret.) Hal Moore and Joe Galloway it depicts the first battle between the forces of North Viet Nam and the U.S. Army in the Ia Drang valley in the central highlands of South Viet Nam. Hal Moore was used as a consultant on the film and he indicated it was done right. According to General Moore all the other films about the war were not depicting the events as they truly were but had other agendas. The film depicts both side of the conflict realistically and draws the viewer in to the futility that was the Viet Nam War. There were true heroes on both sides and after the battle and all the casualties (especially to the North Viet Nam army/Viet Cong) the Ia Drang Valley still remained under control of the Army of North Viet Nam.
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on July 20, 2014
Never has a movie touched me like this one. Viet Nam was my generation's war. I'm not a big fan of Mel Gibson, but he did a wonderful job portraying Hal Moore, as did all the actors chosen. They had big shoes to fill. The Viet Nam vet bore the brunt of that unpopular war and I never understood that. I hated the war, as I do all wars, but I loved the warriors. Cudos to Randall Wallace for making, from what all the Viet Nam vets I know have told me, the closest thing to what Viet Nam was really like. He did a masterful job. I don't know how you could watch this movie, and not feel anything but immense pride for our soldiers. My little town of 588, paid a terrible price for that war when two of ours came home in coffins. I wish all Americans who treated the returning vets so shamefully could see this. Maybe they would understand what an awful thing they did. To all the Viet Nam vets out there, a much belated welcome home, and we love you all.
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on August 6, 2009
This movie has received many reviews over the years so there is not much more I could say about this film of the Army at the start of the "real" war in Vietnam.

What I can add to the subject is that the decision by Maya Lin to have the names in chronological order has never been so clearly validated as when Mel Gibson (presumably as LTC Moore) looks at Panel 3 and sees the names of the 7th Cavalry soldiers killed at the Ia Drang, grouped as they had died, together.

The "song" which should be a hymn to all battle deaths, from the parting of the Red Sea to the most recent deaths in Afghanistan, "...Mansions of the Lord" should conclude every religious service on every Army post anywhere in the world, be it the Army of Andorra or Turkmenistan. It is a message that is applicable to any country`s military. If nothing else, the film should be remembered for this,
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on June 2, 2014
A very good friend, who was badly injured in combat in Vietnam strongly recommended this after I'd told him I'd watched "Apocalypse Now" and some of the other better known Vietnam movies - and been disappointed with them all.

He also recommended I read the book first (We Were Soldiers Once… And Young) first to give the movie more context and background - I did so, over a year ago, and finally got around to watching the movie. It was definitely a good idea to read the book first: Not only does it provide more background to the situation, it also helps in understanding some of the inevitable confusion of battle, and what is going on as battle ranges around the surrounded 7th Calvary.

Never having been in combat, it's tough to judge accuracy of the combat scenes, but I'll go with my friends' judgement that they were the most accurate he'd seen in a movie. As another reviewer said, there are no obvious heroes in the combat scenes here; it's a man-for-man, and buddy-for-buddy fight in the long grass and scrub surrounding an anonymous landing zone somewhere in the Vietnamese North Highlands.

Hal More is represented as a father like (almost god like) figure to his troops; and to me this feels a little over the top at several points during the movie. Given that he was the author of the book, I'm a little suspicious of this representation as too good to be true; but again - I have never met the man, or served under him so I will leave that judgement to others.

Others commented on some of the 'final words' being predictable or unimaginative. I'd disagree - I'd say that in our last few moments, we're all likely to say some pretty basic (and predictable) things, and have messages for our loved ones.

All in all, a great movie - and made even better by having read the book before hand, and having a personal recommendation as to it's generally accurate portrayal of a time and place from someone who was far closer than I.
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on July 31, 2002
The bottom line here is simple: This movie is extremely well done, and Mel Gibson (along with the majority of the other actors) does an incredible acting job. This is one of the most realistic portrayals of warfare on a battlefield-level that I have seen in a while.
Most of this movie is the brutal neverending Ia Drang Valley battle between American and Vietnamese forces. With bullets whizzing, soldiers screaming, and choppers flying overhead you feel as if the only thing missing is the smell of the gunpowder. However, when the movie switches to show the families back home and their lives, it is capable of exceptionally emotional and very touching moments. The transition between such scenes is very well done. You don't find yourself watching an adrenaline-pumping scene and suddenly switch over to a scene of a sobbing wife. Instead, it naturally takes you through the peaks and lulls of emotion and you never find yourself being taken off-guard.
The end result is an excellent movie that has definite replay value. I plan on adding it to my personal collection.
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on January 2, 2016
Because of my younger age, I may have known little about the Vietnam War except my older sisters had friends who fought, died and survived with horrible injuries to the body and mind. The boys who went were gone replaced by damaged men. To this day, my husband plays golf with a man who lost his leg in the Vietnam War. I suffer the most by how our country treated these brave men when they returned from service. I hope we are ashamed by our actions and never allow a returning soldier to be alone without the honor deserved. I watch We Were Soldiers at least once a year to remember their sacrifice. The Vietnam veterans I know say it is a realistic portray of battle but damage was done off the battlefield when these young men became addict to drugs while servicing. This tragedy is still not out in the open.
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