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The biography of Ron Kovic. Paralyzed in the Vietnam war, he becomes an anti-war and pro-human rights political activist after feeling betrayed by the country he fought for. Written by
Murray Chapman <email@example.com>
The actor who played young Ron Kovic, Bryan Larkin, was originally from Massapequa, NY, the town the very character he was playing was from and where the bulk of the movie takes place. Of course, most of the movie was filmed in Texas, including the young Ron Kovic scenes. So, Bryan Larkin left his hometown of Massapequa for Texas to film scenes that are meant to be in Massapequa. See more »
When Ron is taking the train to Upstate NY a Mass Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) commuter train is used. See more »
[enters the room, beaming]
Ronnie, Ronnie, you're doing the right thing! Communism has to be stopped! It's God's will that you go, and I'm proud of you.
[gently pats his shoulder]
Just be careful, that's all.
Don't you know what it means to me to be a Marine, Dad? Ever since I was a kid I've wanted this - I've wanted to serve my country - and I want to go. I want to go to Vietnam - and I'll die there if I have to.
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"Born on the Fourth of July" is a film based on the real-life experiences of Vietnam veteran Ron Kovic (Tom Cruise in an Oscar-nominated role). As a young man he feels that Vietnam is just another battleground for the United States. Even after he returns home paralyzed from the waist down, he still feels that Vietnam is important and that if you do not support the fighting then you should leave America. However, he has a change of heart and becomes an anti-war activist who realizes that one gets nothing out of combat but heartache and sorrow. Oliver Stone's screenplay is pretty strong, but it is his unrelenting direction that makes the material work throughout. Tom Cruise established himself as a high-class actor and the film stays above water because of that fact. The lack of character support does impede the progress of the film though. Willem Dafoe, Tom Berenger, and Kyra Sedgwick make somewhat token appearances and the impact of their screen-time is all minimal. Cruise's character dominates the film. This is both the film's strong point and weak point. All in all a strong film, but could have been so much more. 4 out of 5 stars.
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