*** Official "WE WERE SOLDIERS" Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Robert Crawford, Feb 28, 2002.

  1. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    This thread is now designated the Official Discussion Thread for We Were Soldiers. Please, post all comments, links to outside reviews, film and box office discussion items to this thread.
    All HTF member film reviews of We Were Soldiers should be posted to the Official Review Thread.
    Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
    Crawdaddy
     
  2. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    Seems like I'm in the minority, but I really did not like We Were Soldiers at all!
    I say 'minority' because I've already recieved THREE nasty emails from readers who think I'm an evil, heartless communist for daring to criticize this flick. For those interested, my seemingly controversial review can be seen here.
    Three emails. And the review has only been up since this morning! [​IMG] Oh well, at least I know I'm being read by someone! I look forward to seeing other people's reactions to this movie, and if you end up loving this movie - please don't send me nasty emails! [​IMG]
     
  3. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Scott,

    I'm going to see this film this afternoon, so I'll let you know my thoughts about this film sometime this evening. I've read the book and I found out there are a couple of scenes in the film about Mel's daughter "What is war?" and the praying scene in the church with a young officer. Now, those scenes are definitely plucking on the heart strings that was never in the book. Also, I've heard about a couple of the death scenes with some corny dialogue but based on what I've read those actual lines were actually spoken by the dieing soldiers.

    Crawdaddy
     
  4. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    I listened to Kenneth Turan's review of this movie on NPR this morning, and he hated it too, Scott, so don't feel too bad. [​IMG]
    He even compared it to one of the, IMO, worst movies ever: "The Green Berets". The trailer made this movie out to be too sappy and corny, but so did the trailer for "Black Hawk Down", a movie I loved. I guess the trailer might have been correct in this case though.
    /Mike
     
  5. Tommy G

    Tommy G Screenwriter

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    Scott, I would hardly call your review controversial. I know I'll make my own decision but I was so looking forward to seeing this in the theater because it is the first Vietnam War movie which paints our soldiers in a positive light. Platoon, Apocalypse Now and Full Metal Jacket all have very negative scenes with regards to our vets and I was so looking forward to one that is based on the life of a real Vietnam War hero. I think for nothing else to finally see a Vietnam War movie where our own guys aren't killing each other should be refreshing in and of itself.
     
  6. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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  7. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Scott,

    I don't have time right now to go into specifics but I found your film review off base and almost in its entirety, I disagree with it. Also, those characters you mentioned in your review might be cliche to you but they were actual men who fought in that battle. As much as I loved "Black Hawk Down", I found this film even better in some aspects.

    Crawdaddy
     
  8. Guy_K

    Guy_K Second Unit

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    How does this film compare to Black Hawk Down? Will it be an Oscar contender?
     
  9. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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  10. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    I haven't read the review, Scott. I'll be seeing it tomorrow night. I doubt I'll see it as Patriot 2, nor do I think it will match BHD. Robert, I understand how you feel. I cried at Pearl Harbor during the attack sequence because those were real sailors. The youth who serve our country have rarely been well-served on screen (BHD being a beautiful exception). They are not all saints...but I swear some of them are[​IMG] It doesn't mean every movie about them will be good (see PH, above). As for the portrayal of Vietnam, this conflict occurred at the beginning (it IS the beginning) of our involvement. The emotional and political baggage came well after Ia Drang. It has no place in this movie or the story, and to criticize the movie for that (as some have done in the snippets I have seen - I don't count you, Scott, because I care about your review and am saving it until I have seen the film) shows a lack of understanding of the history of this conflict.
    I don't like treacly oversimplification of conflicts or soldiers' emotions, but if it serves the soldier (and I don't mean the officers or older men - I mean the boys), I'll at least respect that.
    Take care,
    Chuck
     
  11. Bill J

    Bill J Producer

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    The trailer was VERY misleading. When I first saw the trailer I thought that it was goint to be just like The Patriot. The trailer was really a turn off because it included a lot of "family stuff," like the little girl saying,"Daddy, what's a war." The actual film did have those elements, but it DID have a lot of combat scenes. The combat scenes were very similar to Black Hawk Down excpept that they depicted the enemy more. I gave We Were Soldiers a three and a half star rating instead of a four because I hated it when the film showed the wives reading the death telegrams DURING the battle.
    I thought that those scenes kind of stopped the flow of the battle scenes.

    Overall, Black Hawk Down is the better film, but I think that We Were Soldiers is one of the best films so far this year.
     
  12. Josh_Hill

    Josh_Hill Screenwriter

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    Well, I might go see this today. This or 40Day40Nights. I'll chime in with my review if I see it. Later.
     
  13. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

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    I just came from seeing 'WWS', and I didn't care for the film either. To me it just didn't pull me in like 'BHD' did, also I thought the film was really disorganized.
    And if you thought the trailer was sappy, wait until you see the film itself! This film OD's on triumphant and noble speeches given by Mels charactor, and yes, those scenes with his daughter were just too much. And of course all of this was accompanied by a musical score that said to the audience "O.k., now feel sad, o.k., now feel proud..." Didn't work.
    The battle scenes were good, but nothing we havn't seen before, and seen better. The battles in 'BHD' almost made me want to take cover behind my seat, they were gut wrenching and real, 'WWS' didn't have that affect on me at all. I felt like I was simply witnissing the battle rather than feeling like I was actually IN the battle.
    I'll probabby pick this up on dvd in a few months, but it'll be for the audio only which was outstanding, the movie however just didn't cut it for me.
     
  14. Mark E J

    Mark E J Second Unit

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    It is my understanding that some scenes in the film like the "What's war?" scene, and the scene in the church were based on real incidents and put in the film at the request of Col. Moore himself.
     
  15. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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  16. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    I gave it a very good review (A- or 3.5 stars).

    I think it brings home what it's really like to be in a war like many other war films don't, and the experience is excruciatingly painful once you start empathizing with the families that are torn apart from the military service to our country.

    I don't think the "what is war" scenes are THAT sentimental, they simply reflect reality for children of military officers that are directly in war. It's a valid point to address. Sure, some see it as blatant tugging at the heartstrings, while I see it as being emotionally honest given the future these soldiers faced going into battle 12,000 miles away from their families and homes.

    I was grateful for the respite of the war footage because had it continued on and on, it might have really overwhelmed me to the point of numbness, but Randall Wallace, pulls us back to show us the pain that's inflicted on the families of the soldiers during war of the casualties.

    No one truly "wins" in war, the lucky ones survive and get to live on borrowed time. How some make use of that time makes all the difference in the world to one's family.
     
  17. todd stone

    todd stone Screenwriter

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    john williamson. sappy? its very accurate from what im told and there is NOTHING sappy about war my friend.
     
  18. Jonathon Tillman

    Jonathon Tillman Stunt Coordinator

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    Well I really liked the movie, I saw it tonight and I have to say it was probably better if not equal to the rating of black hawk down. But I am still waiting for a big blockbuster, A big blow you away movie. Maybe what I am waiting for is another really really good movie from spielberg like Minority Report or indiana jones 4 but I don't want to go off in topic. I would give We were solder 4 out of 5 stars.

    Jonathon
     
  19. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Comparisons to "The Patriot" and "Braveheart" are really offbase in my opinion. Unlike those two films, the historical inaccuracies were of far lesser degree in depiction of the actual events. Also, the whole theme of this film was generally less corny and unrealistic when compared to "The Patriot".

    Crawdaddy
     
  20. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Just read the Entertainment Weekly article on this film, and Galloway and Moore contend that the film is 85% accurate to the fateful 3 day mission that went awry in a big way.

    One sequence that did get the Hollywood treatment was the manner in which Hal Moore's wife got the Western Union telegrams (telling of which soldier died in battle and having the letter directed to the soldier's wife/family). Moore's wife got notification beforehand, and didn't rely on the yellow taxi to drive up with the bad news telegrams, but she did personally deliver the bad news to the newly created widows.

    Galloway (the photographer, who co-wrote with Moore the original book), said he relived nightmares when he met with the actor playing the soldier of Japanese descent who was firebombed and Galloway had to carry him to the helicopter, he couldn't even shake the actor's hand with the actor in the gross burn make-up, it was just too real for him.

    I also don't see the sappiness in this film at all. To me, it plays like the truth. That ill-fated mission had to be a supremely harsh 3 days of battle and survival for those who were there, and I felt like I was in the trenches along side all of the soldiers. I still can't believe people willingly went into battle in those conditions (I know I'd be scared shitless), but patriotism has a way of making people see the bigger picture, of leaving a mark on the world, of making the world slightly better when you leave than when you entered into it.
     

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