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Jeremy Collier is a Vietnam veteran who has returned home and is struggling to cope with the war experiences that haunt him. He is also at odds with his family, who cannot begin to understand what he has been through. Jeremy's battles with his family finally spiral out of control on Thanksgiving Day, when a bitter secret is revealed.Written by
"The War at Home" was a labor of love for director/star Emilio Estevez, and the care he took with this story is evident on screen.
Adapted for the screen by original playwright James Duff, the film focuses on Jeremy Collier (Emilio Estevez), a veteran of the Vietnam War who is deeply scarred by his experiences. Jeremy's family can't understand his pain or deal with his erratic behavior. On Thanksgiving Day, each family member reaches their breaking point.
The cast is just about perfect. They look, sound, and act, like a family; albeit one that is struggling mightily. Real-life father and son Estevez and Martin Sheen are great opposite one another (look for Estevez's sister Renee and daughter Paloma in small roles). Kimberly Williams also does quite well as Jeremy's sister Karen, and the amazing Kathy Bates virtually inhabits Jeremy's mother Maurine.
One of the most striking things about "The War at Home" is the domesticity of it all - a real sense of a family trying to keep up appearances - which is so well-established that the film's explosive finale is all the more shocking. This is a different and very effective presentation of a Vietnam veteran's experiences. Don't hesitate to check out this movie, which should have received more attention back when it was released.
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