Samantha Hughes, a teenaged Kentucky girl, never knew her father, who died in Vietnam before her birth. Samantha lives with her uncle Emmett, who also served in Vietnam. Emmett hangs around... See full summary »
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Samantha Hughes, a teenaged Kentucky girl, never knew her father, who died in Vietnam before her birth. Samantha lives with her uncle Emmett, who also served in Vietnam. Emmett hangs around with Tom, Earl, and Pete, three other Vietnam vets who, like Emmett, all have problems of one kind or another that relate to their war experiences. Sam, as Samantha is known, becomes obsessed with finding out about her father and his experiences, but Emmett and the other vets don't want to talk about the war. Sam pushes everyone to attend a dance honoring the town's veterans, but Pete and Earl get into a fight, Emmett disappears, and Tom takes Sam home for an unsuccessful tryst. When Sam reads her father's diary, she begins to understand what his life and death meant, and she and Emmett, with a trip to the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial, come at least temporarily to terms with the war in their lives. Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
Ken Jenkins, who plays "Jim Holly" (the organizer of the veteran's dance), is the father of Daniel Jenkins who plays Sam's father in the Vietnam flashbacks. Their casting in the film was purely coincidental. See more »
A lot of the criticism against this movie comes from the fact that it didn't follow the book as accurately as it could have. But since I haven't read the book, that's not an issue for me. I didn't have to sit there and say "Hey! That's not how it happened!"
This movie caught me by surprise. The only reason I saw it was because I happened to be channel-surfing and I noticed Bruce Willis with a weird mustache. The movie was just starting, so I settled in to watch the whole thing. This says a lot about the kind of recognizability Bruce Willis has earned in the years since he made this movie.
In all I was very impressed with his performance as Emmett. And while Emily Lloyd was a bit on the annoying side, the role she played was portrayed beautifully (which I guess was the whole point).
Being a Canadian, the Vietnam War doesn't hold as much meaning to me as it does to Americans. But this movie went a long way towards showing me how someone who was affected by the Vietnam War dealt with the repercussions. While the movie did develop very slowly and seemed to drag on at times, it was wonderfully refreshing and touching.
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