24 user 14 critic

Let There Be Light (1980)

Not Rated | | Documentary, War | 16 December 1980 (USA)
A group of mentally traumatized veteran patients is followed as they go through psychiatric treatment.


John Huston


John Huston
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Uncredited cast:
Walter Huston ... Narrator (uncredited)
Benjamin Simon Benjamin Simon ... Self (uncredited)


A documentary, filmed shortly after the end of WW2, shot entirely in a US Army psychiatric hospital. Candidly shot, the film shows the mental casualties of war - soldiers with PTSD and other neurological issues: their symptoms, how they cope and, if they're lucky, how they are cured. Written by grantss

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Documentary | War


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


A controversial work at the time, this film was suppressed by the United States government for over thirty years after it was produced. See more »


Narrator: These are the casualties of the spirit, the troubled in mind. Men who are damaged emotionally. Born and bred in peace, educated to hate war, they were overnight plunged into sudden and terrible situations. Every man has his breaking point and these in the fulfillment of their duties as soldiers were forced beyond the limits of human endurance.
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Referenced in The Century of the Self (2002) See more »

User Reviews

Just astounding...a big thanks to National Film Preservation Foundation for this insight into War Trauma
28 May 2012 | by nomoons11See all my reviews

All these years we saw through film and newsreels at how heroic our soldiers were during WWII. We never got to see what some dealt with like we see today. Back then they were super human and all bullet proof. Turns out the issues we well know today, were relevant far before these days. This film will show with great clarity what "PTSD" or shell shock can do to a human mind.

In this, you get to see real issues of having to deal with being thrown into a human horror show all the while coming from a normal background and living a basic ordinary life. These guys were just living normal lives like most do but when war calls, things can happen to the mind for some. With this film, you'll see what the realities of war can do to a seemingly normal man.

Most days in the news we get to hear about the issue of PTSD in wars that were/are quite recent. Seeing this you'll know, how long this issue has gone on.

Not enough thanks can be given to National Film Preservation Foundation for saving and restoring this must see on how war can affect...the soul.

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Release Date:

16 December 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Let There Be Light See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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