'1000 Films to Change your Life' is a book with excerpts from many highly regarded critics, actors, directors and writers,…
Casualties of War
Even in war... murder is murder.
During the Vietnam War, a soldier finds himself the outsider of his own squad when they unnecessarily kidnap a female villager. Based on the actual events of an incident on Hill 192 in November, 1966.
"Oh, God. I'm sorry."
at one point the military defense attorney shouts that being a witness isn't hazardous but De Palma would beg to differ. he tantalizes us by recording the hidden tunnels, enemies in wait either hiding behind us or looking just like us, codes we can't interpret. but this is a recreation of a real evil, not the seduction of images, and some things cannot be resolved or reconstructed, and so in a way this doubles as his confession, one that forces you to watch her but makes it impossible for you to save her.
"Jesus, we're suppose to be here to help these people."
DePalma, beautifully and horrifically, reveals the devastations of the Vietnam War. While it doesn't necessarily cover any new ground, as far as Vietnam films are concerned. It does however, show the atrocities from the Vietnam side as well as the American side. DePalma has been always been a director who makes films for himself, and doesn't give a shit about how critics, the studio, or audience members are going to react to it. I find this to be one of the most admirable qualities of DePalma as a filmmaker; he's simply not afraid. As far as i'm concerned, he'll always be one of the greats.
Based on the notorious Hill 192 Incident during the Vietnam War in 1966, De Palma's Casualties of War takes on a much more serious and difficult subject than any of his other efforts and as far as I can tell seems to be his most mature work to date. In the leads we have the then up and coming Sean Penn and Michael J. Fox in some of their best roles and rounding it up with John C. Reilly, John Leguizamo and Don Harvey we have a solid supporting cast. It's a very performance-driven film and as such it was important to have a spot-on cast for which the director evidently had a fine eye. They may not be groundbreaking…
I'm convinced Brian DePalma doesn't have a subtle or original bone in his body, which makes him the perfect director for two things: a sports movie or a war movie. While I'm still waiting for his remake of Field of Dreams, Casualties of War will tide me over for now.
Featuring Sean Penn doing a prescient impersonation of the Al Pacino of the 2000s.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Michael J. Fox participates in a rather dodgy mission lead by Sean Penn.
Penn's character is a lunatic and takes a Vietnamese girl with them. Unfortunately for her, all of the squad (except you know who) rapes her and then kills her.
Fox doesn't like this and gets them all done.
Masterful character study that stands in for an entire country's desperate and honest attempt at reconciliation. De Palma at his most eviscerating and political.
If DePalma had kept his cliches in check, this war film could have delivered the punch that was intended. It feels oddly muted and distant. Sean Penn hams it up shamelessly, but Michael J. Fox has never been better. Terrific cinematography, however, and the wide screen images - along with Morricone's score - have power that the muddled script never delivers.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
As far as Vietnam War movies go, the big ones are Apocalypse Now and Platoon. With good reason, they are the two that got plenty of critical acclaim and box office at the time, and have endured well in the years since. But there’s another Vietnam War movie that I saw once, on TV in the early 90s, that I still remember vividly. I would have been maybe 12 or 13, so probably not old enough for the horrific stuff the movie addressed and depicted. But in the more than 20 years since, I have never forgotten the impact of this movie. Which is why I think it’s unfair that Casualties of War isn’t on the same pedestal as Coppola and Stone’s Vietnam classics.
Wow- DePalma makes up for whatever decidedly unfeminist, sexually exploitative films he's made with this one, a raging and mournful outcry against war violence and violence against women. Featuring a lifetime performance from Sean Penn, and Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly (The Vietnam Years). Also featuring plenty of DePalma watchful voyeurism, and his trademark brilliant camera moves.
Also a key player? A gorgeous score from Ennio Morricone. Tarantino called this his favorite Vietnam film and I can see why. It holds nothing back. It's brutal, violent, horrifying, but honest. A must see.
One of the best
The otherness with which the Vietnamese are treated sour a mostly well-intentioned film (the constant "mystical Asian" pan flutes on the soundtrack certainly don't help). But the movie has other qualities, being a little bit of everything -- a bit of action movie here, crisis of conscience there, courtroom drama at the end -- so while it can be off-putting, at least it's never boring. That's the great thing about De Palma it always feels like he's just trying to entertain himself. CAUSALITIES OF WAR even produces one of his greatest shots -- after mortar shells cause Michael J. Fox to become trapped in a fox hole, the camera drifts below the ground to reveal the V.C. tunnels in which…
Um dos melhores trabalhos de Brian de Palma juntamente com "Os Intocáveis". O filme se passa em 1966, durante a Guerra do Vietnã e mostra a crueldade de um grupo de soldados americanos de um lado e a indignação de um deles de outro. Michael J. Fox mostra mais uma vez seu carisma e convence na pele do soldado Eriksson, Sean Penn por sua vez mostra seu habitual talento ao interpretar o terrível Meserve, a excepcional trilha de Ennio Morricone casa perfeitamente com o filme e é um dos destaques da trama.
Not a film anyone who views it will forget in a hurry.
Horrific story based on a true event when 4 US soldiers kidnapped a young Vietnamese girl, dragged her out on patrol and gang raped her.
Wasn't overly impressed with Sean Penn's acting. He does seem to think he is a lot better than he actually is.
Nor was I impressed with quite a few of the sets. They looked suspiciously like they were filmed not in the forests of Vietnam but the inside of a film studio.
Having said that its a film that packs one powerful punch and chips away a little more at the faith that we have in our fellow human beings.
This movie plays out like a horror movie in parts and it's so rad. It's kind of like "I Spit on Your Grave in Vietnam" but if Michael J. Fox was around to witness the horror and be driven mad by it. There's even a scene when the camera goes POV through the eyes of an unseen killer who's stalking a character at a camp and we see the killer holding his weapon of choice out in front of him like Michael Myers with his butcher knife. It's pretty rad.
Sean Penn plays a hilariously shitty caricature of a "tough guy" from Grease, though and it was hard to take him seriously.
The ending- after they get back from the bush- ends up being more compelling than the drama itself. The whole film seems a bit theatrical (with the soundtrack, beautiful as it is, adding to this), making it easier to watch from a distance. Hamburger Hill is a real contrast to this, where I felt like I was sitting there in the mud with the FNGs. Not that the latter is significantly better... the last 20 minutes or so of Casualties is riveting. Despite the top brass's inaction when Erikson reported the crime, they made some points that muddied the waters and made the film film overall more thought provoking...
But for the grace of God, there go I...
All the films I could find that QT uses as reference points in his films.
1-48 Reservoir Dogs (Django of…