Hearts & Minds (2009)
Critic Consensus: A powerful, unflinching exploration of the Vietnam War, with first-person stories from both sides of the conflict, Hearts and Minds still hits the mark decades after its release.
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Critic Reviews for Hearts & Minds
Not only the definitive American documentary about the war in Vietnam but a landmark political action.
Hearts and Minds is a tough film but it is no mere rehash of sad events. It is always aware of the primacy of man when man's given even half a chance.
A reminder of how the best documentaries can resonate years after their release.
We're bludgeoned by the point of view, we don't like the feeling of manipulation we get. Yet there are scenes here of incredible power, even for a nation which watched this war on television every evening.
It's one of the best documentaries ever made, a superb film about the thoughts and feelings of the era, the whole festering, spirited animus of it.
Davis's film seems as much a prosecution of the present as it is of the recent past; only the names and geographies have been changed.
Audience Reviews for Hearts & Minds
Hearts & Minds, released in 1974, was one of the first films about the Vietnam War to have an anti-war message. Before this, movies like The Green Berets were as pro-war as they could get. But then Hearts & Minds was released, and even though I wasn't alive then, I am sure that it changed alot of people's opinions about the war. The film consists mostly of interviews of soldiers, politicians, and Vietnamese civilians, and it shows how it affected their lives. Most of the interviews offer alot of insight into the war, especially with the injured soldiers, but there were a few interviews that didn't really have any purpose, and they could have been left out. The rest of the film consists of news footage of the war, and even though the footage is usually very brief, the imagery is very haunting. Is the film biased? Yes. Does that make the film bad? No. The film is very one-sided, but it came out during a time when that side didn't really have any support. Hearts & Minds is a great documentary, and it is a great example of anti-war film making, and because of that, it deserves to be watched.
I enjoy the political actions as well as the story that goes beyond the original American-born perspective. This documentary shows the Vietnam War from the Vietnamese perspective more then the Americans. The end message is how wrong and utterly destructive wars can be. This film is a political statement and parallels with the similar belief that I had, which is America shouldn't have gotten involved with Vietnam.
Hearts and Minds is a powerful indictment against the Vietnam War. The editing, though often manipulative, seamlessly weaves actual footage with interviews, giving the film a firm narrative and definite political stance. Itâ(TM)s not objective, but itâ(TM)s certainly persuasive and leaves an impression on you, even almost 40 years after the release of the film and the senseless war.
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