Hearts & Minds - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Hearts & Minds Reviews

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½ September 27, 2014
Unflinching recount of the Vietnam war from those who lost so much to it. You may be saddened by how little we've learned as a nation over the four decades since this war ended. One of the best documentaries I've ever seen and it comes highly recommended....(extremely graphic combat and sexual content, so parental discretion is strongly advised.)
½ June 24, 2014
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.
March 16, 2014
Sem dúvidas, uma descrição objetiva e crua das atrocidades cometidas contra os vietnamitas na traumática Guerra do Vietnã. Entretanto, o documentário também destaca-se por abordar tanto o implacável imperialismo estadunidense quanto a alienação que impera absoluta nas forças armadas do Tio Sam e em grande parte da sociedade norte-americana - ainda que, claro, já existissem no país diversas organizações militares, políticas e sociais contrárias à carnificina no Vietnã. Grandes elogios para a montagem inteligente e habilidosa - que já deixa clara a posição do cineasta, sem a necessidade de uma narração em off - e para os variados e interessantes depoimentos das testemunhas, agentes e vítimas do conflito. Mas além do seu imensurável valor histórico, "Corações e Mentes" também nos lega a infeliz constatação de que o cenário militar estadunidense praticamente sofreu nenhuma mudança nos últimos tempos, mesmo depois de todos os estragos causados pelas bombas de napalm.
February 27, 2013
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.
February 13, 2013
This movie was an excellent documentary on the war in Vietnam. It is graphic, but it explains so much and tells us everything that happened to those poor people. Also the personal application of some of the soldiers added to the extreme chaos, and gives us a better understanding because they were there.
½ February 5, 2013
It's one of the best documentaries ever made. The reason for that is it expressed the feelings of the whole era. It was very animus to what was going around the Vietnam War.
½ January 17, 2013
Hearts and Minds was incredibly sad but needed documentary. The scenes of Vietnam were painful to watch and the soliders that were in denial about what they did were even worse. Although I think this film was extremely biased I feel like some other opinions would have been necessary to have a full view of the war. Other than that I thought it was an extremely important film to watch for history.
Super Reviewer
January 9, 2012
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.
December 19, 2011
An advocacy documentary of the highest order, and hugely influential on the muckraking documentaries of the present day. What's different here though is that, while the filmmakers juxtapose the words of someone with contradictory actions, they don't do it with solely a mean-spirited gotcha. Rather, the filmmakers are so invested in the humanity and morality of the topics they explore that they present the contradictions to underline the hypocrisy of the intentions given and to make us feel and think about those intentions.
September 23, 2011
im eager to see that nice u broaght
½ July 7, 2011
O que falar de um pais que entra em guerra por nada? Nada a comentar sobre... se puder, assistam ao filme!
½ May 26, 2011
awesome doc great footage used
½ March 24, 2011
Very well done. Provocatively edited, for good or bad, take that as you will.
January 8, 2011
An excellent documentary of the Veitnam War/American invasion, non-narratively stylized to allow you to form an independent opinion, though the spliced images clearly depict a war under false pretense with no true winners. Also, the parallels between policy then and what we see in the Iraq/Afghanistan War/American invasion today is, to say the least, uncanny. One major difference between that war & the one today is you won't see the candid coverage allowed then. The government learned its lesson, now we need to be more vigilant than ever, like the efforts of Wikileaks, to expose the truth.
November 28, 2010
Very good documentary on Vietnam war exposing the double standards of American leaders.
October 28, 2010
Americans drop CLUSTER BOMBS on countless civilians; HEARTS AND MINDS totally changes the way I perceive US FOREIGN POLICY. After WORLD WAR II it seems that every WAR we've fought has been GENOCIDAL in nature. Civilians seem to be the target in our WAR strategy.

Let's see: at the end of WWII we (we being The United States of America) dropped two Atomic Weapons on Japan:

upon impact, the Nagasaki Bomb killed 40,000 civilians (8/9/1945)

upon impact, the Hiroshima Bomb killed 80,000 civilians (8/6/1945)

so, within three days my country killed One Hundred Twenty Thousand Civilians with two bombs

Since the two weapons were ATOMIC, Fat Man and Little Boy, radiation was released from both devices poisoning and genetically altering approximately an additional 100,000 civilians. In Total, the two atomic weapons caused the deaths of around two hundred and fifty-thousand unarmed civilians.

In Vietnam, my country financed the French Occupation of Vietnam and then began invading Vietnam as early as 1955, we dropped CLUSTER BOMBS, NAPALM, (sprayed) AGENT ORANGE upon civilian villages constantly especially after OPERATION MENU began that included incessantly bombing CAMBODIA. we killed approximately 242,000 civilians in Vietnam.

Apparently since commencing our involvement in IRAQ, an estimated 151,000 to 600,000 civilian deaths have occurred.

The United States of America seems to target civilians from what I'm hearing.

Then my fellow Americans say "Its "All" propaganda and manipulation. . .

How can "it" be propaganda and manipulation when we have the actual films of the Atomic Weapons actually exploding over Civilian-populated Japanese cities and Footage of the bombings in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan . . .

There's overwhelming evidence that The United States of America targets Civilians in its war schema.

Don't get me wrong I AM TOTALLY NOT ANTI-WAR; if were weren't in Afghanistan, people with axes to grind with The United States of America would be exploding Nuclear Weapons in our major cities left and right for REVENGE over what some of my fellow Americans DID to their people.

Its just very difficult to maintain my country as being The Good Guy in every War Theater since WORLD WAR II.

and HEARTS AND MINDS crystallized my suspicions about The United States of America harboring genocidal tendencies inherent in its Foreign Policy Agenda.

Genocide: when one race kills an exorbitant amount of people of another race.

---Unfortunately war is necessary, especially now because I suspect a lot of cultures probably resent my country's antics during wartime.

how about: war is not unnecessary these days . . . (note the double-negative)
½ March 30, 2009
The thing is, wanting to end a war and supporting an enemy are not reliably the same thing. It's also not the same thing as not supporting our soldiers. There may well be overlap, but there isn't always. There are some people you can't convince of that--but there are always people who make it harder to try. This is, of course, true of both sides. On the one hand, you got the people who called Vietnam veterans baby-killers. The people who openly consorted with the North Vietnamese government and claimed that all stories of atrocities committed by the Viet Cong were exaggerations at best and probably flat-out lies. Those people polarized the debate. However, so did the people on the other side, the ones who declared that anyone opposed to the war was a traitor, the ones who claimed that all stories of atrocities committed by US soldiers were exaggerations and best and probably flat-out lies. There were, of course, nice, sane people on both sides of the debate, but, as in any contentious situation, it's the lunatic fringe that gets noticed.

[i]Hearts and Minds[/i] seems sane and rational, though I'm told the filmmaker, Peter Davis, read a message from the North Vietnamese government as part of his acceptance speech. So there's that. And it's certainly a biased film--the contrast of General Westmoreland explaining that "Orientals" don't place the same value on human life as Americans being intercut with a Vietnamese funeral and the grief connected to it kind of shows that, I think. Most of the film is intended to show the problems of our occupation of Vietnam. Many of those interviewed are veterans, but mostly the kind of veterans who were protesting the war. The few others are primarily used as contrast.

Now, Westmoreland claimed to have been quoted out of context, and there are those who say that Davis trapped him into making the statement. However, I have to say that I can't think of any context that would have made that statement less reprehensible. I also can't see how anything Davis said would have forced Westmoreland to make that kind of statement. Likewise George Coker, a former American POW, declares that Vietnam would be a very pretty country were it not for the people. Now, I can understand Coker's not being the most happy with the Vietnamese people, especially of course the North Vietnamese. On the other hand, he is committing the falacy of tarring the entire population of the country with the same brush.

It is also true, of course, that the film shows only the American atrocities. We see Phan Thị Kim Phúc, the famous girl photographed running naked down the street, horribly burned by napalm. (Richard Nixon, apparently, believed the photo, and presumably the film of the same event, to be faked.) We see that funeral. We hear veterans talk about the horrible things they saw. But we never actually hear Coker talk about what happened to him. We don't get told how either side treated their prisoners, really. We hear a lot about napalm, but nothing about the Hanoi Hilton. It is a biased film, though I'm kind of curious as to how much of popular culture at the time was biased the other way.

I will admit that I do not much approve of the Vietnam War in retrospect. To be fair, I wasn't there for it. The war is considered to have ended in 1975, more than a year before I was born. I'm not best thrilled with the current war, either, though I'm sure none of you are surprised by that. I like to think that we've gotten better at presenting an unbiased view of things, but I know that we haven't. Then again, hardly anyone in history ever has. We consider our current reporting of World War II to be unbiased, but how often do we consider the perspective of anyone but ourselves and Hitler?
March 19, 2009
A total piece of junk. Propaganda and nothing more.
April 16, 2008
Powerful anti war documentary, beautifully pieced together with outstanding footage used. Very well narrated, excellent interviews. Fascinating.
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