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We Were Soldiers (2002)

R  |   |  Action, Drama, History  |  1 March 2002 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 95,716 users   Metascore: 65/100
Reviews: 741 user | 141 critic | 37 from

The story of the first major battle of the American phase of the Vietnam War and the soldiers on both sides that fought it.



(book) (as Lt. Gen. Harold G. Moore) , (book), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Capt. Matt Dillon
Capt. Tom Metsker


In a place soon to be known as The Valley of Death, in a football field-sized clearing called landing zone X-Ray, Lt. Colonel Hal Moore and 400 young troopers from the newly formed 1/7th Cavalry Regiment of the US 1st Air Cavalry Division were surrounded by 2,000 North Vietnamese soldiers dug into the tunnel warren mountainside. The ensuing battle was one of the most savage in U.S. history and is portrayed here as the signal encounter between the American and North Vietnamese armies. We Were Soldiers Once... And Young is a tribute to the nobility of those men under fire, their common acts of uncommon valor, and their loyalty to and love for one another. Written by PHD in CT USA

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


We were... young, brave, husbands, wives, sons, mothers, daughters, soldiers. See more »


Action | Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sustained sequences of graphic war violence, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






| |

Release Date:

1 March 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Lost Patrol  »

Box Office


$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$20,212,543 (USA) (1 March 2002)


$495,567 (Brazil) (16 August 2002)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (cut) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The first scenes in Vietnam show a Battalion sign that says "Garry Owen". This was the famous marching song of the 7th Cavalry and is actually one word, "Garryowen". See more »


Greg Kinnear's character, Major Bruce Crandall, and Mark McCracken's character, Captain Ed Freeman, are helicopter pilots; and wear the branch insignia US Army Corps of Engineers. This is not incorrect. Army Aviation did not exist as a branch from 1947, when the US Air Force separated from the Army, to 1983 when a new Army Aviation Branch was created wearing the old Army Air Force branch insignia. From 1947 to 1983, Army aviators were trained in and designated as belonging to other branches prior to entering flight training, and wore their basic branch insignia even when assigned to flying duties. See more »


[first lines]
Joe Galloway: [Narrating; voice-over] 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 ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

A list of the names of the actual men who died during the battle as well as the city and state where they are from is featured before the ending credits. See more »


Spoofed in El conejo blanco: Warped to Hiroshima!! (2015) See more »


Sgt. MacKenzie
By Joseph Rizza Kilna
Performed by Joseph Rizza Kilna (as Joseph Kilna MacKenzie)
Produced by Joseph Rizza Kilna (as Joseph Kilna MacKenzie) & Seoras Wallace
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Seeing the enemy and home in a different light
10 March 2004 | by (Durham, NH) – See all my reviews

This film is so different from the traditionally cynical (and rightly so) Vietnam War movies. While it goes without question that this film depicts the bloody and gruesome horrors of the tragedy of the first major conflict of the war, it does so while juxtaposing the story with that of stories of the home front and the enemy. The enemy in this film is not the animalistic, silent enemy we are used to. We hear this enemy speak, we see his love for his family and his devotion to his cause. While being bombarded with images of death and destruction on the battlefield, we are brought back home to see the wives as they face the death themselves.

While of course not a flawless movie, it was without a doubt moving, and I highly recommend it.

74 of 108 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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