A telling of the 1st Battalion, 7 Cavalry Regiment, 1st Calvary Division's battle against overwhelming odds in the La Drang valley of Vietnam in 1965. Seen through the eyes of the battalion's commander, Lt. Col. Hal Moore (played by Mel Gibson), we see him take command of the battalion and its preparations to go into Vietnam. We also see how the French had, years earlier, been defeated in the same area. The battle was to be the first major engagement between US and NVA forces in Vietnam and showed the use of helicopters as mobility providers and assault support aircraft. Written by
Most of the rifles used in the film are actually the M16A1, identifiable by the forward assist on the left side of the rifle. The M16A1 was not introduced until 1967 but was likely used in place of the historically accurate M16 in the film because the latter would have been nearly impossible for the films armorers to acquire in the numbers necessary for the film. See more »
SPOILER. The air strikes that supported the bayonet charge (to clear the area around the landing zone toward the end) were done by fixed-wing A-1E Skyraider aircraft rather than the Huey helicopters flown by Snake Crandall and Too Tall Freeman. It would have been impossible for the ground crews to change the configuration of the Hueys from "Slick" (troop carrier) to "Hog" (gunship) and back in the time frame depicted, especially with the nearly nonstop flying that Crandall and Freemen did. See more »
These are the true events of November, 1965, the Ia Drang Valley of Vietnam, a place our country does not remember, in a war it does not understand. This story's a testament to the young Americans who died in the valley of death, and a tribute to the young men of the People's Army of Vietnam who died by our hand in that place. To tell this story, I must start at the beginning. But where does it begin? Maybe in June of 1954 when French Group Mobile 100 moved ...
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I should never be surprised that people, who wouldn't recognize Principle, much less Honor, Duty, or Country if it introduced itself, see virtue as vice. As one who served in that war, I found the movie to be factual to the point of pain. Those who call this movie racist, lack vocabulary. or an understanding of racism. I don't know which is sadder. This movie tells a part of a soldier's story very well. Soldiers march to a different drummer, how tragic that so many, today, still refuse to honor those who protected them.
The millions in Indo-China murdered at the hands of the Communist cry that our "racism" was so poorly lead at the highest civilian levels that we abandon them. Their blood is not on my hands or on the hands of my fellow soldiers. It is on the hands of those who are so blind they refuse to see. A valid case could be made that that there are errors in the story, certainly it doesn't tell the rest of the story, or of the next part of this battle where US casualties were 40%. What it does tell it tells very well. Those men were volunteers, and their nobility shows in this movie. I recommend it, especially for any who would want to understand those who served at that time.
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