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Posts Tagged ‘war movie’

Oliver Stone’s brilliant 1986 film on the grunt’s war in Vietnam had a lot to work with: a controversial subject well placed for dramatic effect, brilliant acting from his three leads (Dafoe, Berenger, and, yes, even Sheen), some stunning visual images (more on this in a moment), and the superb employment of Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings. The result is a movie that must rank in the top three of the 1980s and, to boot, one that is impossible to characterize cleanly as an anti-war movie (No one will suspect it of being pro-war.) (more…)

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An almost endearing stiltedness undergirds this fine film’s narrative, as though set pieces have been prepared in order to allow the characters to deliver solemn speeches Though this may appear artificial and even insincere to modern movie-viewers, it is a dramatic technique at least as old as Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey. What Gods and Generals shares with those ancient poetic ballads is the celebration of the fighting man’s nobility, his rage, and the juxtaposition of profoundly ordinary human sentiment alongside the most inhumane deeds one can imagine. (more…)

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