Hayes Hodges finds his career aspirations dashed when he's wounded in Vietnam combat. He then returns to America and becomes a disillusioned lawyer who goes up against the service to defend Colonel Terry Childers, who is accused of inciting an incident that leaves many demonstrators dead. Hodges in no position to decline: Childers heroically saved his life back in Vietnam. Written by
When Hodges (Tommy Lee Jones) returns to the bombed-out embassy, there is a picture of then Vice President Al Gore on the charred wall. Gore and Jones were roommates at Harvard. See more »
In the beginning southeast Asia scenes, the forest contains large old-growth trees with thick, heavy bark, south-facing moss, and large broken logs. This type of forest structure is indicative of old-growth northwestern United States forest and is not found in Vietnam, where tropical forest layers compete for available sunlight. In tropical forests, the trees have thin, whitish and tall canopies with hanging vines and even moss layering. Also of note are the ground palms which are too uniformly planted and the lack of thick dead ground mulch found in tropical forests. See more »
Colonel Hayes Hodges:
The guy's a real Marine, dad. I mean, if they can do this to him, just hang him out to dry, they... they can do it to anybody. Forget that he's my friend, they can do it to anybody. And that means, that YOUR medals and YOUR citations won't mean jack shit when they come after you.
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Headed by two unnerving performances, this film takes us on a journey through the gray area that is our military morality today. We live in a society insulated from realistic depictions of war. We get censored CNN and FOX news. We rarely get anything insightful, so it is a pleasure to have HOLLYWOOD offer up one of the most moving anti-military films in the past ten years. While the courtroom drama is by all means standard, the most unique attention is paid to the changing perception of TLJ's character. In his journy to defend, he comes to an all too real understanding of a culture whose leaders have no problem sending our boys to die, yet they themselves are either ignorant of the reality, or to politically motivated to be moved by it. In conclusion, this is an alienating film because it presents an alien culture that lives by its own moral code. That alien culture isn't middle eastern... it is our own military.
One more point; Watching this film post 911 gives it an all too creepy reality.
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