The Five Best Vietnam Movies

    January 6, 2011 at 6:00 am

    It’s a sensitive subject in film but one that should be explored.  The ways in which war is portrayed varies greatly from film to film but if done right the movies can be very meaningful and impact a great deal of people.

    Clearly one war that trumps most in terms of its influence on the silver screen is the Vietnam War.  Directors have tried time and time again to give their best interpretation and I decided to look at five films that probably did it best…..


    This movie began the whole practice of training actors to toughen them up for roles as soldiers. Stone’s Vietnam story brought realism to the screen and touched millions of Vietnam veterans in ways that no other movie had at that time. To this day I still remember hearing about how people who had been through the war left the theaters crying and barely able to move. It truly captured how psychotic a person can get in war.

    Apocalypse Now

    This is one dark, dark movie that really sums up a lot of feelings that most Vietnam vets were coping with long after coming home from the war. Some of the “facts” and practices in the movie were outlandish making this more of a “feeling I get” kind of movie than anything else, but that’s the point; it caused intended emotion. The helicopter scenes were great too!

    Full Metal Jacket

    This is a real guy’s movie if there ever was one. The put downs by R. Lee Ermey as Gny. Sgt. Hartman, the action and the “Me love you long time” will forever be remembered in the minds of us macho types. I have no idea if it helped recruit any Marines, but I do know Hollywood recruited Ermey and for that I think all of us are thankful. Sucks that he’s doing Geico commercials now.

    The Deer Hunter

    Man talk about a beginning to end movie. Number one. It’s draining as all hell. Number two. Did I mention it was draining? At over three hours this movie does an excellent job of capturing the before, during, and after war better than almost any movie. From the joyous wedding to the crazy Russian roulette scenes, to the inevitable crack up of Walken’s character this is one messed up film.

    Born on the 4th of July

    Talk about a great performance by Tom Cruise. To this day I still think this is his best performance. As it’s based on a true story I think that Cruise went to great lengths researching this role and let’s not forget that Oliver Stone is a master of war movies. It was a sure hit. Oh and I’m 99% sure the penis game originated from this film.

    *Though Forrest Gump wasn’t about Vietnam persay I think it did a pretty solid job.

    Speak Your Mind
    Tell us what you're thinking... and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!