Norman is a curmudgeon with an estranged relationship with his daughter Chelsea. At Golden Pond, he and his wife nevertheless agree to care for Billy, the son of Chelsea's new boyfriend, and a most unexpected relationship blooms.
Sally Bender is the wife of a Captain in the United States Marine Corps. He is sent over to Vietnam, and Sally is alone. With nothing else to do, she decides to volunteer at a local veteran's hospital, where she meets Luke, who went to high school with Sally. Luke was wounded and is paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair. When Sally begins to fall in love with Luke, she has to make a crucial decision about her life. Written by
I agree with most of the comments about the overall quality of the film. It was definitely a teamwork political statement. The soundtrack is stunning,not only in the selection of songs from the period - by far the best film in this respect - but the subtle manner in which they are integrated into the film's soundtrack. The acting is good to excellent - Fonda, Voigt and Carradine in particular.
However, my one complaint is with the Dern character. In this I speak from some personal experience, as a vet with a tour of duty in Nam. This may be quibbling, but...perhaps his contract had a clause prohibiting cutting his hair, but the locks (for a Marine captain) are much too long. He would have received a direct order to get them cut . Also, the close relationship between Dern and the sergeant is out of character. Marine Corps Captains did not hang out with E5 enlisted men. This is even more blatant in the scene after Dern's return from Nam when he goes out drinking and brings home three enlisted Marines. A Marine Corps Captain would not be drinking in uniform with enlisted men on or near the base - let alone bringing them home. I won't go into the problems I have with Dern's apparent and largely unexplained repulsion at what his men did in the field. However, Dern aside, the film itself has a very authentic feel to it and there are unforgettable scenes such as those in the VA hospital and Voigt's final speech to high school students as Tim Buckley's haunting "One I Was" can be heard in the background. In many respects this film is the direct antithesis of Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket", which while visually authentic suffers from a lack of emotion.
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