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A unit of American military advisors in Vietnam prior to the major U.S. involvement find similarities between their helpless struggle against the Viet Cong and the doomed actions of a French unit at the same site a decade before in this bitter look at the beginnings of the Vietnam war. Written by
Keith Loh <email@example.com>
The south Vietnamese general's building shown about halfway into the movie is actually Throop Hall, which was located on the campus of Caltech in Pasadena, California. Visible in the foreground is Millikan pond and the bridge that both still exist. Throop Hall was torn down in 1971, so this image must have been file footage that was spliced into the movie, since the movie is copyrighted 1977. See more »
During the beginning of the movie, when the XO is showing Major Barker a map of MukWa, a microphone boom briefly appears at the bottom between them. See more »
An excellent film spotlighting early American "advisory" to South Vietnam up to 1964.
To anyone who has studied Vietnam, Go Tell The Spartans portrays it quite accurately. From the weapons of the era, the general disdain of some officers over our involvement, to the psychological effects on the soldiers themselves, this movie succeeds in each department. Burt Lancaster does an excellent job of portraying the hard-boiled Major Barker, and is backed by a fine cast. All the facets of the soldiers are portrayed, though often through amplified stereotypes, giving the viewer a feel for what made the soldiers tick. Drug use, libido, cowardess, heroism, concern, hatred, each of these traits find themselves embodied in one of the characters.
This isn't a feel-good film, but it did provide a few chuckles here and there. And although it doesn't come close to informing the viewer about what Vietnam was like, it tries admirably.
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