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We Were Soldiers (2002)

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The story of the first major battle of the American phase of the Vietnam War, and the soldiers on both sides that fought it, while their wives wait nervously and anxiously at home for the good news or the bad news.

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(book) (as Lt. Gen. Harold G. Moore), (book) | 1 more credit »
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1,958 ( 239)
3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Lt. Col. Hal Moore
... Julie Moore
... Maj. Bruce 'Snake' Crandall
... Sgt. Maj. Basil Plumley
... 2nd Lt. Jack Geoghegan
... Barbara Geoghegan
... Joe Galloway
... Lt. Col. Nguyen Huu An
... Sgt. Ernie Savage
... 1st Lt. Charlie Hastings
... 2nd Lt. Henry Herrick
... Sp4 Robert Ouellette
... Capt. Tony Nadal
... Capt. Matt Dillon
... Capt. Tom Metsker
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Storyline

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, Lieutenant Colonel 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 U.S. and N.V.A. forces in South Vietnam, and showed the use of helicopters as mobility providers and assault support aircraft. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

400 U.S paratroopers. 4000 Vietnamese soldiers. 12 000 miles away from home. 1 man led them into battle. See more »

Genres:

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:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| |

Release Date:

1 March 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Lost Patrol  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,212,543, 3 March 2002, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$78,122,718

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$114,660,784, 4 July 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mel Gibson, who portrayed Colonel Moore in this film, is also famous for his role as Detective Martin Riggs in the Lethal Weapon film franchise. In Lethal Weapon (1987), the Battle of Ia Drang is mentioned. Riggs' partner, Roger Murtaugh, states that he escaped being seriously wounded or killed in action while serving there, only because his friend took a bayonet in the lungs for him. See more »

Goofs

In the scene where the soldiers are celebrating being sent to war, the Sam Moore and Dave Prater Jr. song "Hold On, I'm Coming" is playing at the party. This song was actually not released until five months after the battle of La Trang, in March 1966. See more »

Quotes

[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 ...
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Connections

Featured in We Were Soldiers: Getting It Right (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Sgt. MacKenzie
By Joseph Rizza Kilna
Performed by Joseph Rizza Kilna (as Joseph Kilna MacKenzie)
Produced by Joseph Rizza Kilna (as Joseph Kilna MacKenzie) and Seoras Wallace
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Entertainment, or factual account?
25 March 2004 | by See all my reviews

It's quite sad to read some of the reviews of this film. "full of clichés" "typical weak war film" etc. I would like for the writers of such comments to look at the film they "coughed up their reddies" for, and ask what they were really after? Do they know what the film was about? The director's aim was to create an honest depiction of a real life event. To tell the story of a battle and war in a way that would make people who weren't there understand what it may have been like. To bring home the stark realisation of how scary the battlefield would be, and explore the wider picture of how families, and even the enemy were affected by events too. Many of the words used by the dying men are documented as being the actual words. In the editors commentary, he explains "these were the true dying words 'tell my wife I love her'. In that situation, it is the reality of what is on people's minds. I'm sorry they couldn't have come up with something more melo-dramatic for the theatre audience." The line that really bought it home for me though was that soldiers who had fought in that battle thanked the director. They said he had managed to show the realities of an event in their lives that they had, to that point, never managed to fully explain to their families. If the people who were there say this is a realistic account of events and emotions, then that's the best accolade a film can have. I was scared and moved by it and would recommend it highly. PS. to the plot critics out there... would you rather they sexed up a true story? Surely that would be a grave tragedy.


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