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Casualties Of War [DVD]

Michael J. Fox , Sean Penn , Brian De Palma    Suitable for 18 years and over   DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
Price: 4.33 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Michael J. Fox, Sean Penn, Don Harvey, John C. Reilly, John Leguizamo
  • Directors: Brian De Palma
  • Writers: Daniel Lang, David Rabe
  • Producers: Art Linson, Fred C. Caruso
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: English, French, German, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Hindi, Turkish, Danish, Bulgarian, Swedish, Finnish, Icelandic, Dutch, Norwegian, Portuguese, Greek, Hebrew, Spanish, Italian, Croatian
  • Dubbed: French, German, Italian, Spanish
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: Columbia Tristar
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Feb 2002
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005R0CS
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 21,142 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Based on a real incident, this Vietnam war drama tells the story of one soldier's quest for truth and justice amidst the violence and moral incertitude of war. On patrol with the hard-nosed Sergeant Meserve (Sean Penn), US infantryman Private Eriksson (Michael J. Fox) refuses to join in when Meserve and the other soldiers kidnap, rape and murder a Vietnamese girl (Thuy Thu Le). Eriksson's stance then puts him in a dangerous position when the patrol returns to base, as the other soldiers get increasingly worried that he might report them.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Morality Play 13 Jun 2009
By Woonwai
Format:DVD
This is a difficult movie to watch. There are disturbing scenes. I won't go into the plot because this is a review rather than a summary. What it made me think about was natural justice; the idea that a person, simply by being a person, irrespective of their nationality or religion or other circumstances, has certain inherent rights - including the right not to be brutally treated by another human being. The irony of the movie is that America, a country that has natural justice as the heart of its culture (the concept leads to democracy, the inherent right to choose who governs you - part of the whole right to life, liberty and happiness deal), in this movie is seen sending soldiers to a country, in this case Vietnam, as part of espousing that the western democratic way, natural justice, is better than communism but, in doing so, uses poorly educated soldiers and fails to control them so that they are allowed to betray the idea that they are meant to be fighting for and behave in a way totally contrary to the way that natural justice says people should act. The movie more or less asks the question, if we're going to behave in that way, and turn a blind eye when it happens, then what's the point? If we behave like that, do we have any right to call ourselves civilized and tell other countries that they should respect our morality and culture? It asks wouldn't it just be better if we stayed at home and sorted ourselves out before going around and telling other countries how to behave?
Disturbing stuff; a provocative morality play rather than a date movie.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Sometimes you hate the enemy so much" 13 Sep 2007
Format:DVD
Sean Penn is the best that I have ever seen him in this film. This is a film about soldiers that have gone wild in Vietnam - a law unto themselves. Yet the motivations of the individual soldiers for doing what they do (in other words becoming a law unto themselves) are very different. Having said that the one thread that brings out, or acts as a catalyst in bringing out, the different manifestations of evil in these soldiers, I felt, was the dominant suffusion of evil emitting from Sean Penn's character. This suffusion of evil is almost spell-binding and all weaker mortals can do, it seems, is follow (or in the case of the viewer is watch). It is this evil that is so strongly influencing those around him that truly makes this film a true masterpiece. The others followed as right became wrong and wrong became right. And when I watched it I felt myself swept up and transported to the Vietnam War. It didn't feel like a 'plastic' war film it felt real, as I watched the drama unfold - because the characters were so real. I would love to say more about this great film - but if I did I would spoil the plot.... A++++
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Get the Extended Cut. 12 Aug 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Although the difference between the theatrical cut and the extended version is approximately 6 minutes worth of scenes, I must recommend getting the Extended Cut. The cross-examination of Michael J Fox's character and the skepticism and undercurrents of disgust which he is met with when the investigation into the atrocities is launched add so much to the film, further emphasizing that the codes of loyalty and camaraderie in place amongst the soldiers made exposing injustice an all the more difficult task.

The film is excellent. DePalma is more restrained in his tendencies to dazzle with technical prowess. There is, however, an operatic quality to the acting, more noticeable in some scenes; emotions run high, the music swells and the camera presents images (particularly on the bridge) that are painterly, masterful in how dramatic they are. These qualities contribute to the sense of what another reviewer termed as the "morality play" characteristics of the film. This film would be perfection for me if it weren't for a "big speech" convention near the end of the film, the type of speech that is too unambigious in stating the moral position of the film. It is the sort of moment that is easily parodied when looking at "oscar bait" movies made in the present era.

The Special Features on the Extended Cut are limited but satisfactory. There is a 15 minute featurette with Michael J Fox looking back on the making of the film. More interesting is the half hour 'Making Of' Documentary. The ammount of superfluous talking heads are kept to a minimum- DePalma speaks at length, and it is always interesting to hear him talk about the process. I only wish he would do Director's Commentary tracks for his films.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brian De Palma's masterpiece 10 July 2013
By D Mara
Format:DVD
This doesn't belong in the same category as other Vietnam War films in my opinion.This is a low-key War film,and isn't so much about the Vietnam War iself.It's a about the kidnap,rape,and murder of a girl at the hands of a group of US soldiers during the war.The incident actually happened but it could have happened during any war.It's about trying to do the right thing,even when you're caught up in chaos and destruction.

Brian De Palma's film-making is masterful here.Shot after shot,the cinematography is stunning throughout.And Michael J.Fox is superb,as the only soldier who tries to do the right thing,and not take part in the girl's suffering but ultimately still fails to save her.He goes from nave,to disturbed,to demoralized,and haunted all in the same film.It really is a great performance by him.I've always found Sean Penn to be an overrated,scenery chewing actor but it kind of works here as the crazed Sergeant who is behind the kidnapping.

I thought the theatrical cut was a good film but slightly flawed,but now this extended cut resolves that in my opinion.This is the version to see.The theatrical cut failed to explain how the military found out about the girl's murder,despite Fox's superior officers not been interested in the incident.Now in this version,Fox is seen been interrogated by two agents (in another brilliantly filmed scene all in one tracking shot).Also originally,it just showed the four guilty officers been interrogated in court,but now we get to see Fox been cross-examined,and it gives the film so much more impact.

A truly thought-provoking,haunting film that you can't take your eyes off of because of the acting,and because of De Palma's film-making.Ennio Morricone's score is also hugely effective,and unforgettable.This is a masterpiece.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Prompt service
Very good film, but terribly sad. Very well directed by Shaun Penn. highly recommended to watch to learn from the mistakes of the past.
Published 14 months ago by Mrs. Rylla Dragan
3.0 out of 5 stars It represent the mentality of some of the troops who were there
Like some of the other Vietnam films, this one shows the corrupt actions taken by a few of the troops who were sent over there. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Fly Fisher
5.0 out of 5 stars The Only casualty in war is innocence
Have got to say this film has got to be one of my fave movies it may not be platoon or black hawk down. But that's a good thing not a bad thing. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Napalm_trickster
2.0 out of 5 stars Ouch :{
well, well, well, i never expected to dislike a Michael J Fox movie. I love him, and the bits where his character really comes out are good! Read more
Published 24 months ago by SamHalling
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
DVDCasualties Of War [DVD] [1989] An excellent Film. The Acting was superb. I can imagine exactly what did happen during the World War II.
Published on 8 Nov 2010 by peggles
1.0 out of 5 stars Feminist propaganda and not very creative at that
This movie is set in the Vietnam War. A group of US soldiers is no longer satisfied with just raping an odd woman here and there. Read more
Published on 31 July 2010 by Printul Noptilor
3.0 out of 5 stars Nasty Film
Penn was perfectly cast in this movie, unfortunately Marty McFly, sorry Doc Hollywood, sorry Michael J Fox wasn't. Read more
Published on 27 Nov 2007 by D. G. Reid
5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect film in every department.
This is de Palma's MASTERPIECE. Its relative critical failure led to his later dreck like Mission Impossible and Femme Fatale. Read more
Published on 7 Mar 2007 by weofme
5.0 out of 5 stars Anti-War
As a bit of a 'Nam film veteran myself I feel compelled to publish my thoughts on this harrowing rendition of the war in Vietnam. Read more
Published on 23 Jan 2004 by "fataljustice"
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