The Odd Angry Shot - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Odd Angry Shot Reviews

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September 27, 2014
In between drinking cans of Fosters beer, Australian soldiers tread on a few landmines, and generally experience the war in Vietnam.

stars Graham Kennedy, John Hargreaves, John Jarratt, Bryan Brown, Graeme Blundell, Richard Moir, Ian Gilmour, John Allen and Brandon Burke.

directed by Tom Jeffrey.
½ April 11, 2013
Follow up to Jen's review
I see why people would have criticized the casting of Graham Kennedy, but I would not think it was because he was older and fatter, but because he was such a gag-man: his lines often sound rehearsed, like in a comedy show, and he sounds bizarrely unnatural in the midst of the rest of the cast, that is generally good.
As for the low budget: I don't agree with the fact that the reason why we do not see the explosion leading to Rogers (Bryan Brown) having his legs cut off is lack of funds. It actually makes perfect sense in the narrative. The first casualty is Scott, whom we see attentive to his mail, then to the meeting, doing everyting right in the patrol until he is shot. Lots observation in preparation for his disappearance from the group. In the case of Rogers, we first see the men leaving the shooting range joking, and the last line of this scene is Rodgers saying, laughingly, 'who said crime doesn't pay?'. A few seconds later, we discover him lying wounded: he is paying for crimes he didn't do. No need for a lenghty scene like that announcing Scott's death, because the viewer already understands that episodes like these have become the men's daily bread.
Finally, I don't agree that the last scene is peaceful: Bill is clearly disillusioned, doesn't want to talk, can't talk at all, is not happy to be there as he would not be happy if still in Viet Nam. He is broken and Harry's attempts to cheer him up don't convince him.
It's a movie made with intelligence and sensitivity: we see in Jeffrey's camera the love for the actors, and for mankind. Never has Brown looked so likeable in a movie, nor Kennedy so vulnerable. John Hargreaves is crazy in an ebulliant and delightful way. The fight scene between the Americans and the Australians is sheer pleasure.
November 16, 2012
As soon as the movie intorduced itself with its Dirty Dozen style opening credits, and it's drum n whistle music, i knew this was gonna be a dated war movie. But it was actually quite engaging, with some quite interesting banter amongst the troops. Not long into the movie, i realized this was heavily influenced by M.A.S.H. and the movie reminded me of it. It was great to see a cameo by Alf from Home and Away, and the Scorpion v Spider fight was pretty unique. I knew the Scorpion would win
September 15, 2012
This is how Aussies go to war ,with all the offbeat humour and sadness that was the conflict in Vietnam.
August 1, 2012
Great Aussie movie..watch it
June 9, 2012
Great Australia film about the Vietnam war. Producing some of the best quotes for all time.
June 9, 2012
i give this one an A for effort - but sadly it falls into too many cliches to make it a great film. first of, these guys are supposed to be elite soldiers (SAS) so i don't buy their innocent joviality heading into a war zone - guys like that would be a lot more serious about it and they'd have lost their innocence in training (you don't just get to be SAS...). but as a typical loss of innocence movie - like so many war movies are - it's pretty standard, but too be fair, real. the spider & scorpion fight really jumped out at me because we did that when i was in the army! it doesn't achieve the high art that "the deer hunter" or "apocalypse now" does but it is interesting to see it from an aussie perspective and there are some good moments - like the end when they get home... it's a common, yet poignant, moment that many combat vets experience the world over.
August 20, 2011
Interesting portrayal of the Australian experience in Vietnam. Contains some profound one-liners on the war. However, errs too much on trying to be amusing, which generally results in some fairly lame jabs. Could have been a lot better than that, an Australian Apocalypse Now / Platoon / Deer Hunter / Full Metal Jacket, but instead falls well short.
December 12, 2010
A great war film. Those who criticise it for it's random nature and disjointed themes just don't appreciate that this is just the reality of war, that it doesn't just follow a clear narrative.

What's probably the greatest virtue of this film is that it portrays the sheer BOREDOM of war. That most of the time you're on stag, doing recce patrols, conducting raids etc where nothing happens. It also gives a good idea of what the Anzac SAS actually did in Vietnam, long range recce patrols, ambushes, raids, killing and capturing small groups of Vietcong guerrillas and recovering some of the huge amounts of documents the enemy produced and the intelligence corps delighted in. When we actually see combat it's not the elaborate set pieces we're used to but short, random and arbitrary as the title suggests

Some have criticised the casting of Harry, saying he's too old and fat for the role. Nonsense, I've met real SAS guys just like him, not everyone in the special forces resembles Arnold Scharzeneger/James Bond. I really take to the character, a veteran of Borneo and possibly Malaya and Korea, taking care of the new guys but telling them how it is and pulling no punches. The scene where he stands up to the pompous office-bound Sgt Major (utterly UNTHINKABLE to challenge his authority in real life!)is a classic. Interestingly the officers are portrayed in a wholly positive light which is a rarity in Vietnam films

As has been stated elsewhere this actually gives an unrealistic idea of SAS casualties, in reality they only lost 6 men and killed over 400 enemy in Vietnam. Possibly the author wanted to show the wider experience of Anzac forces in the conflict

The lack of budget also shows a little, we see the aftermath of a raid on a village where the team kill a Vietcong guerrilla and capture 2 more but we don't see the raid itself. We see Bryan Brown's character crippled by a booby-trap but don't see the explosion. The 'big battalions' of the Royal Australian Regiment are referred to but never seen.

I really love the ending, Harry and Bill return to civilisation and have a beer in their favourite bar. The barman asks if they're just back from Vietnam and Harry lies and tells him no, not to be nasty, he just doesn't want to talk about it. They sit and enjoy their beer, looking out on the world, the Sydney skyline, grateful for what they have and quietly mourning those they've left behind. For those of us who have seen both the darkest and best of human nature in the most extreme of circumstances haven't we all felt like that at times?
December 1, 2010
an amazing war movie; takes you from good times at camp to the rain and blood of the jungle, one scene to the next. Gut wrenching but not excessive, entertaining but not light viewing.
And look out for Ray Meagher! :-)
November 19, 2010
The Aussie 'Mash' approach to the Vietnam War - so you know there's going to be a drunken brawl or two somewhere within it. It has a good vibe to it, and the intentional humour in the script is almost always making a wider statement in what is an understated view of the war.
½ August 15, 2010
Probably a good film in it's day but was pretty painful to watch. Very dated and not a single funny joke. A supposed war film but just seem to be about SAS soldiers drinking all the time.
½ June 16, 2010
This is an Aussie Classic, for it's time very good. The humor and mate ship of the SASR in Vietnam really make this film. One to buy and add to your collection. You won't be disappointed.
½ April 23, 2010
This is simply the most realistic Viet Nam era war movie ever made. It is a testament to the Aussie warrior-class and their abilities. The jungle patrols and personal interactions depicted were spot on!
April 7, 2010
One of the best war movies ever made... And so few have even heard of it.
December 22, 2009
The best and only movie worth seeing about the Australian involvement in the Viet Nam War.
½ August 24, 2009
One of the best Viet Nam films ever. Aussia SAS from Home & Away, Young Doctors, Flying Doctors, Neighbours and the rest.
½ May 23, 2009
Slow moving, low budget movie about Australian infantrymen in Vietnam.
March 4, 2009
This came out the same year as Apocalypse Now and The Deer Hunter, and is a study in contrast. Great cast, esp. Bryan Brown pre-Breaker Morant.
December 28, 2008
clearly Tom Jeffrey did no adapting to the original novel which is a huge disappointment. Why, well because there was a good film in here somewhere. But the episodic broad nature of the script ruins the film. It should purely have stayed from John Jarratts' perspective the whole film.
There are definite signs of Don McAlpine's work, some shots have a very close resemble to his work on Predator. unfortunately the action directing and writing by Jeffrey is crap. Kennedy is ok, Hargreaves is alright, Jarratt is good, but really the most interesting thing about this movie is the Trailer Song that was made for it.
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