In Vietnam, 1954, a French platoon isolated behind enemy lines tries to come back. It is led by the inexperienced, idealistic sous-lieutenant Torrens, and by adjutant Willsdorf, a WWII veteran of the Werhmacht.
A drama focusing on the suffering, torture, and brutal treatment the American P.O.W.s had to deal with daily while in North Vietnam's Hoa Lo Prison, the most infamous P.O.W. camp in Hanoi. ... See full summary »
Paul Le Mat,
John Edwin Shaw
A group of Australian SAS regiment soldiers are deployed to Vietnam around 1967/8 and encounter the realities of war, from the numbing boredom of camp life and long range patrols, raids and ambushes where nothing happens, to the the terror of enduring mortar barrages from an unseen enemy. Men die and are crippled in combat by firefights and booby traps, soldiers kill and capture the enemy, gather intelligence and retake ground only to cede it again whilst battling against the bureaucracy and obstinacy of the conventional military hierarchy. In the end they return to civilization, forever changed by their experiences but glad to return to the life they once knew. Written by
This film's director Tom Jeffrey has said of this movie: "It was a risky commercial venture making this movie in 1978. The Vietnam War was a dirty subject. Few people wanted to be reminded of our involvement. Remember the soldiers 'Welcome Home' march didn't happen until about seven years after the film was made. But I wasn't making a conventional war movie. What I wanted to convey was soldiers as real people . . . Although the men are tough professionals, we focus on the human side of their lives. The film shows their courage, their fears, their loves and their humor - the full range of emotions shared and understood by everyone. It is a film about men who happen to be soldiers. We sought to make a very alive and human film, which is funny, exciting and tense but very warm and poignant, too. It is a film about expectations, how we all imagine great things for ourselves but then have to cope with a reality which often falls far short of those expectations. It is about trust, how we all need to trust in ourselves and others, and how that trust is like a fine thread which can be broken very easily. It is about friendship, how we all rely on friends for protection and help and how, through their support, we can live through our fears. And it is about laughter, how laughter can help overcome fears and worries, and, through it, help demonstrate our compassion. And finally it is about alienation, the growing realization that nobody much cares about the situation they're in, or what is happening. At the end Harry [Graham Kennedy] and Bill [John Jarratt] cope with this by denying they've served to Vietnam. This is why 'The Odd Angry Shot' continues to have resonance and appeal for today's audience". See more »
In the final scene of the film, when Harry and Bill have flown home to Australia they sit in a bar and have a beer. Through the window the Sydney skyline can clearly be seen in the distance. However, the Australian SAS are based in Perth, not Sydney and it would have been to Perth that they would have been flown home to. See more »
A really well constructed Australian film, that accurately portrays the Vietnam 'feeling' in this country. Best described as a sad thought provoking work, with some excellent and funny performances by the skilled cast. A low budget film that 'over achieves' its message.
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